Washington (CNN) - Just over half the public says that the GOP should give up more than the Democrats in any bipartisan solution to the country's problems, according to a new national survey.
And a CNN/ORC International poll also indicates that a slight majority of Americans sees the Republican party's policies and views as too extreme, a first for the GOP, and fewer than a third say they trust congressional Republicans more than President Barack Obama to deal with the major issues facing the nation.
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The poll's Thursday release comes less than two weeks before the country faces automatic tax increases on nearly all Americans, as well as deep federal spending cuts, if no deal is struck to avert the country from falling off the fiscal cliff at the end of the year.
According to the survey, 53% say the GOP should compromise more, with 41% saying the Democratic Party should give up more of the proposals it supports to develop bipartisan solutions.
"That's due in part to the fact that the Republican brand is not doing all that well," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
Fifty-three percent of those surveyed say they view the policies of the GOP as too extreme, up 17 points from two years ago. Only 37% say they view the polices of the Democratic Party as too extreme.
It probably doesn't help that House Speaker John Boehner, who's leading GOP fiscal cliff negotiations with the president, is held in fairly low regard, particularly in comparison to Obama. According to the poll, 34% of the public approves of how the top Republican in the House handling his job. By contrast, the president's approval rating stands at 52%.
"Small wonder that nearly half say they have more confidence in President Obama than in the congressional Republicans and that nearly half (48%) would blame the GOP if the fiscal cliff occurs," adds Holland.
Thirty-seven percent said they would blame the president more, with 11% saying they would point fingers at both sides equally if no agreement is struck to avert falling off the fiscal cliff.
The survey also indicates that seven in ten Americans continue to think that the fiscal cliff will cause a crisis or major problems for the country if a deal is not reached.
The poll's release comes one day after Obama and Boehner publicly butted heads, with the president saying Republicans were focused too much on besting him personally instead of thinking about what's best for the country. And Boehner said Obama had yet to make a proposal offering his promised approach of balance between increased revenue and spending cuts.
The survey's release also comes hours before the Republican led House is expected to vote on Boehner's backup tax plan that limits tax hikes to income above $1 million. While a concession from his original opposition to any kind of increase in tax rates, the Boehner plan sets a significantly higher threshold for a rate hike than the $400,000 level sought by Obama.
One piece of good news for the Republicans in the survey: Most Americans say that it's good for the country that the GOP controls the House, an indication that the public would not like to see the Democrats with unchecked power in Washington.
The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International December 17-18, with 620 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.
- CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report