Poll: Three-quarters of Americans want shutdown to end
October 4th, 2013
09:29 AM ET
7 months ago

Poll: Three-quarters of Americans want shutdown to end

Washington (CNN) – More than seven out of 10 Americans disapprove of the government shutdown, and they say they're angrier than they've been about the way things are going in Washington.

The CBS News poll, which was conducted after the shutdown began and was released Thursday night, indicates 72% of Americans are not in favor of the shutdown that resulted from disagreements over the federal health care law.

As the country enters day four of the shutdown, no progress has been made in Congress to reach an agreement to restore funding to the federal government and bring back more than 800,000 furloughed employees.

The GOP-dominated House has been trying to push through a series of small bills to fund various entities of the government bit by bit. But Senate Democrats and the White House have made it abundantly clear they will accept nothing less than a proposal that funds the government all at once.

Nearly half of the country (43%) is "angry" with the way things are going in Washington, the highest in CBS News polling. Slightly more (44%) are simply "dissatisfied," while 8% are "satisfied" and 2% are "enthusiastic."

CNN Poll: Congress, tea party hit all-time low in CNN polling

But who's to blame? The survey indicates both parties share blame, but 44% of Americans think Republicans are at fault, while 35% say Democrats and President Obama are responsible for the shutdown. Seventeen percent blame both.

That falls in line with a CNN/ORC International Poll released Monday that also shows Republicans will be blamed more than Democrats for the standoff.

The country is split on when they think the shutdown will end. Just over half (51%) say the standoff will be resolved in the near future, while 42% say it will "take a long time."

CNN Poll: Poll gives both sides ammunition in health care battle

About one in five Americans (21%) say the priority for Congress should be to stop Obamacare from taking effect, while 73% say lawmakers' top job right now is to get the government running again.

Nearly half (47%) say they are personally affected by the shutdown and 50% say they're not affected.

CBS News interviewed 1,021 Americans by telephone from October 1-2. The poll's sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.


Filed under: Government Shutdown • Polls
soundoff (57 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    "but 44% of Americans think Republicans are at fault, while 35% say Democrats and President Obama are responsible for the shutdown."

    9% spread is a little north of what is needed in an election year for the Dems to overcome the GOP's gerrymandering such that the majority of votes actually determine the majority of the House...instead of the minority of votes determining the majority of the House like we have now.

    October 4, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  2. freedom

    What most Americans really want is a COMPROMISE. But the president and Reid are in dictator mode – and won't budge – like spoiled brats. Who would ever do business with these two in the real world. They would lose every deal and be kicked out of the boardroom with these antics. And the worst part is they're playing with OUR money and treating us like puppets.

    October 4, 2013 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  3. Michael Q

    It is a sad state of affairs when Polls become your reason to do anything! Thus, the importance of elections and your source of power is the vote you cast, assuming you are given the right to freely exercise your right to vote. How much money has been spent to influence your vote and by what organization?

    Is it just me, or does a closely or cleverly worded question posed to a small sample of 1000 to 1500 people is truly representative of what the whole American population is thinking? I would think a poll given to 1000 rural farmers in the mid-west would be different to the same question poll given to 1000 urban dwellers in the Greenwich Village area in the New York area, as opposed to 1000 surfers on Manhattan Beach on the west-coast.

    My point is, every time I hear anyone referencing a given poll, I ask myself who financed the poll, who worded the question, how were the 1000 respondents selected, and where? Also, I want to know who interpreted the answer to the question? In other words, all Polls have done is make Pollsters very wealthy and political parties more resistant to change or compromise. The irony is all of this is based on the original question and how it was worded for who's purpose! I suggest you follow the money to get your vote and you'll understand why most Americans act the way they do. Of course, if Americans travelled beyond their home environment or got a good liberal arts education, they would begin to understand how the world works for the greater good of all as opposed to a few selected power-hungry zealots.

    October 4, 2013 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  4. Data Driven

    @Fair is Fair,

    "If the government offered me all of the money AND my employers put into Social Security with a reasonable 4% rate of return (interest) compounded annually, the YES – I'd opt out of Social Security IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE."

    Wouldn't your employers simply want THEIR money back? Why would they give it to you?

    Who guarantees the reasonable 4% rate of return "compounded annually"? Wall Street? If not them, who - the government? Seems like a lot of ifs, hopeful ands, and headscratching whos to me. Maybe a guaranteed check from the government that we've all contributed to is the far simpler solution?

    And who pays for the millions who have been unable or unwilling, for whatever reason, to manage their money as smartly as you probably would? Do we let these old folks roast trapped gophers off the roadside near their jalopies, like they did in the 1920s? I think caring for millions of suddenly and totally indigent people would be a far more expensive proposition. A little socialism usually turns out to be cheaper in the long run. Pay me now (socialism) or pay me later (catastrophe).

    These programs were instituted for a reason: namely, there was no other solution to the problems of caring for the elderly.

    October 4, 2013 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  5. Lynda/Minnesota

    "That is what I think will happen again in 2014 Anonyous. The re-election of these very same anarchists and greed-powered representatives."

    Hey, now. This isn't like you to speak so discouraging, girlfriend. Hold your faith, Dominican mama. Seriously. 2014 will be an entirely different election. Voter suppression. Women's rights. Immigration. The fight for the elderly who are being forced out of their homes and out of their pensions. The middle class being forced out of the middle class. THESE are the things that matter and are worth fighting for, and these are the idea's that will bring voters out ... mid terms notwithstanding. We need to stick together, as we have stuck together for the past 5 years. Never ever give into rightwing chatter boxes who spew nothing but hate and division. It is advice YOU told ME to hang onto. And what excellent advice it has been throughout all that has happened lately.

    Ted Cruz and his ilk will not win this battle. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not next year.

    October 4, 2013 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Bessy

    teaparty days are numbered

    BUULSEYE, Dominican mama 4 Obama, BULLSEYE!!!

    I agree ! The Republicans couldn't stop Obama from being elected a 2nd time so they will just shut down the country. It is time to shut them all out of office. We also need new laws that state anytime these guys play games with the lives of the country they have their pay and benefits totally held. They get nothing!
    -------------------------------------------------
    I'm being closely moderated so let me attempt to respond to you guys again!
    The bottom line guys is that we HAVE TO, out of a sense of self-preservation and civic duty, get out there and vote in 2014.
    It is CRUCIAL otherwise we are only victimizing ourselves and helping to disempower, and disenfranchise our President.

    October 4, 2013 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    REMEMBER: They can only keep screwing us if we keep re-electing them.
    VOTE IN 2014.

    October 4, 2013 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  8. Carlos

    Oh, did you want to repeal Obamacare? By all means!

    First get the votes for repeal in the house, then pass it on to the senate and get the votes for repeal.

    What? You don't the the votes? THEN YOU CANT DO IT. THAT IS HOW IT WORKS.

    Quit being the kid who is losing at checkers so he knocks the whole board over.

    October 4, 2013 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  9. Lynda/Minnesota

    "About one in five Americans (21%) say the priority for Congress should be to stop Obamacare from taking effect, while 73% say lawmakers' top job right now is to get the government running again."

    This can't be correct. John Boehner has been saying that a majority of Americans want Obamacare shut down and as such he shut the government down for the will of the people.

    October 4, 2013 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  10. Rick McDaniel

    I think your numbers are bogus.

    October 4, 2013 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Lynda Minnesota
    Hey, now. This isn't like you to speak so discouraging, girlfriend. Hold your faith, Dominican mama. Seriously. 2014 will be an entirely different election
    -------------------------------------------------
    I told you that sometimes the crap seeps into my psyche, and you're right it's not like me!
    I think I snapped out in my next posts (if they get posted that is! lol!).
    We gotta get out there and vote in droves in 2014.
    Vote them all out so that their voice and their vote will be just as meaningless as they think our voice and our votes are.
    How's that buddy?!

    October 4, 2013 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  12. Sniffit

    "If the government offered me all of the money AND my employers put into Social Security with a reasonable 4% rate of return (interest) compounded annually, the YES – I'd opt out of Social Security IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE."

    Yeah, and if someone gave me a flying unicorn AND it could fart sparkly rainbows with pots of gold at both ends, then YES – I'd be painting the sky with farts IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE.

    October 4, 2013 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  13. Data Driven

    @Rick McDaniel.

    "I think your numbers are bogus."

    It's not important what any of us THINK, RIck. Or wish. Or hope. A mature person comes to an accommodation with the facts. Thoughts, wishes, and hopes then shift according to changing realities. The reality here is that Americans don't like your shutdown. Do you agree with them, or John Boehner? Decide. Because wishing away the poll numbers is a meaningless activity.

    October 4, 2013 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  14. Lynda/Minnesota

    Dominican mama: "How's that buddy?!"

    Wonderful. And more like that lady I've grown to admire!

    P.S. I caught your old self coming through after I sent my post. To be truthful, I was ready to give up this a.m. when my first post never made it out of the corral. So, see ... you once again dragged me back in.

    October 4, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  15. Gunderson

    Wow,
    Old Gunderson really like, big, no responsibility liberal, sit on ass, let George do it stand in welfare line, get food stamps party. What you vote for, right? Well you got it. Have fun at cook out, uh at Rome burning. Old Gunderson have loads of money. You??? Why want shutdown end. Then Party over. Ouch !

    October 4, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  16. rla

    This started with Reid not allowing a budget to pass and keeping appropriations bill on his desk effectively shutting down the budgeting process and acting like a dictator... Combine that with a law (obamacare) which the democrats have failed to allow people to read before passage and did it without republican (they represent the other people) input... Please explain how this is not going to be the straw that breaks the economic back of the USA and how you spent so much time on a non-functional bill while letting the job scene deteriorate while printing money to prop up the so called recovery

    October 4, 2013 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  17. Silence DoGood

    @freedom
    "What most Americans really want is a COMPROMISE."

    Conservative history revision alert.

    The original law WAS a compromise and it WAS negotiated way back when everyone had their chance to speak up. Many progressives like me wanted it to go FARTHER but it was a COMPROMISE, so I am going to live with it and not whine. And brace yourself because my vote in the future will be for more progressives. You go ahead and vote whiner if you like.

    October 4, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  18. Wake up People!

    Yes we do Dominican Mama and Lynda...

    I'm in a bit of a funk too. As soon as I logged on I was bombarded with idiotic, unintelligent, grammatically challenged comments from all the people that don't even understand how our government works. Help me my sisters. And these are the people that vote GOP and give them so much power. I can't believe the people that actually think President Obama, is supposed to promote the GOP agenda.....

    October 4, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  19. ghostwriter

    Freedom, compromise is great. They had 9 months to do that. Republicans refused to meet. Suddenly, a week before it's all to go down, they decide to not only not ask for a meeting, but lay down a budget that has democrats conceding to lower budget levels AND defunding Obamacare and said take it or leave it. Nice compromise. The democrats, to their credit, took the budget cuts and passed a bi-partisan resolution that just took out all Obamacare wording. Even though the bill has bipartisan support in the House, Boehner has refused to hold a vote on the bill that originated in HIS HOUSE! The shutdown didn't even need to happen.

    Your own republicans are calling you guys out on this. The polls don't agree with you. Everything is against you in this. And against all logic, you plod forward.

    October 4, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  20. Fair is Fair

    @ Data Driven

    "Wouldn't your employers simply want THEIR money back? Why would they give it to you?

    Who guarantees the reasonable 4% rate of return "compounded annually"? Wall Street? If not them, who – the government? Seems like a lot of ifs, hopeful ands, and headscratching whos to me. Maybe a guaranteed check from the government that we've all contributed to is the far simpler solution?"
    --------–
    My 6.2% contribution to Social Security is matched penny for penny by my employer. If I was self-employed, I'd have to pay to the tune of 12.4%. I'm clearly entitled to my employer's contribution in this example (or should I say dream?).

    4% rate of return is more than fair, considering that's about what 30-year t-bonds are paying (and they're at historic lows).

    At any rate, conceive for a moment what 12.4% of your salary socked away from day one of your working career would look like after a 45 year working career. In comparison, Social Security would look like chump change – and you only get it if you make it to age 65 (or 67 in my case). I'd jump at the opportunity.

    October 4, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  21. Fair is Fair

    Sniffit

    "If the government offered me all of the money AND my employers put into Social Security with a reasonable 4% rate of return (interest) compounded annually, the YES – I'd opt out of Social Security IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE."

    Yeah, and if someone gave me a flying unicorn AND it could fart sparkly rainbows with pots of gold at both ends, then YES – I'd be painting the sky with farts IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE.
    ----------
    Wow... almost sounds like an admission that, given the opportunity, we could better take care of our retirement than the government possibly could. Thanks for concurring.

    October 4, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  22. The Real Tom Paine

    -rla

    This started with Reid not allowing a budget to pass and keeping appropriations bill on his desk effectively shutting down the budgeting process and acting like a dictator... Combine that with a law (obamacare) which the democrats have failed to allow people to read before passage and did it without republican (they represent the other people) input... Please explain how this is not going to be the straw that breaks the economic back of the USA and how you spent so much time on a non-functional bill while letting the job scene deteriorate while printing money to prop up the so called recovery
    ***************
    I love Rightie improv: its one of the few ways they are truly creative.

    October 4, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  23. Lynda/Minnesota

    "I'm in a bit of a funk too. As soon as I logged on I was bombarded with idiotic, unintelligent, grammatically challenged comments from all the people that don't even understand how our government works. Help me my sisters."

    I saw that, Wake Up. LOL. After awhile I find I can't even respond anymore. I know others thrive on the back and forth, but not me. I raised 3 daughters and had enough of the double talk when they were growing up. No doubt I've been soured by their double talk experience. The good news is, most people really don't change their minds because of what some fool troll thinks or writes. Shh, though. It's a secret. We'll keep it between ourselves.

    October 4, 2013 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  24. freedom

    @Silence, ghostwriter

    This law was rammed through by Pelosi and Obama without one republican vote, and against the will of the American people. That is not compromise by any stretch of the imagination.

    October 4, 2013 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  25. Data Driven

    @Fair,

    "At any rate, conceive for a moment what 12.4% of your salary socked away from day one of your working career would look like after a 45 year working career. In comparison, Social Security would look like chump change – and you only get it if you make it to age 65 (or 67 in my case)"

    I'll concede that 12.4% of a lifetime salary is a lot of money. Most people aren't self-employed, though, so back down to 6.2% we go. Not so much, now. Perhaps still better than Social Security checks - I'll even concede that, at least for the sake of argument. (Not sure it's true, though.) But again, it's the "socking away" part that becomes problematic. This is a paycheck-to-paycheck nation these days. Stagnant wages, rising cost of living. Most people can't "sock away" anything.

    And so we arrive back to the question: what do we do about folks who couldn't or wouldn't sock their 6.2% away? How expensive would it be to deal with such massive indigence? Perhaps more expensive than the SS contribution from our paychecks every 2 weeks? I think so.

    October 4, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
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