CNN Shutdown Poll: Plenty of blame to go around
October 7th, 2013
04:03 PM ET
11 months ago

CNN Shutdown Poll: Plenty of blame to go around

Washington (CNN) - Most Americans say the government shutdown is causing a crisis or major problems for the country, according to a new national poll.

And while a CNN/ORC International survey also indicates that slightly more people are angry at Republicans than Democrats or President Barack Obama for the shutdown, it is clear that both sides are taking a hit.

The poll, conducted over the weekend, was released on Monday, nearly one week into the partial shutdown over a push by tea party backed GOP lawmakers trying to dismantle or defund Obama's signature health care reform law.

According to the poll, 63% of those questioned say they are angry at the Republicans for the way they have handled the shutdown.

"But the Democrats are not getting off scot-free. Fifty-seven percent of Americans are also angry at the way the Democrats are dealing with the shutdown. And a 53% majority say they are also angry at President Obama," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "It looks like there is more than enough blame to go around and both parties are being hurt by the shutdown."

The CNN poll results are similar to those from a new Pew Research Center poll also released Monday and surveys from Gallup and CBS News/New York Times surveys conducted last week, which indicate slightly more people blaming - or angry at - Republicans than Democrats or the president for the shutdown.

Not surprisingly, huge majorities of Democrats are angry at the Republicans, and huge majorities of Republicans are angry at Obama and Democrats. Independents are equally angry at all sides, with 59% of Independents very or somewhat angry at the Democrats, six in 10 angry at the GOP, and 58% angry at Obama.

The poll indicates that 18% of the public says the shutdown is a crisis and an additional 49% say the shutdown has caused major problems.

"That's a higher level of worry than in November 1995, when the government shut down because the Democrats, led by President Bill Clinton, and the Republicans, led by House Speaker Newt Gingrich, could not agree on funding. In 1995, 12% felt the shutdown at that time was causing a crisis and 44% thought it was a major problem," adds Holland.

The two-thirds who say the shutdown is causing a crisis or major problems is similar to the seven in 10 who said the same thing in the Gallup poll.

According to the CNN survey, Democrats are most concerned about the shutdown, although a majority of Independents and Republicans also say the shutdown is causing a crisis or a major problem.

There's also a gender gap, with three-quarters of women but only 57% of men saying the shutdown has caused a crisis or major problems.

Some 800,000 federal workers have been furloughed due to the shutdown, with many government services and agencies are closed, suspended.

The CNN poll was conducted October 3-6 by ORC International, with 1,009 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

soundoff (319 Responses)
  1. Data Driven

    "Not surprisingly", opinion divides on partisan lines.

    "Not surprisingly", won't admit that their team wants to overthrow the Obama Administration.

    "Not surprisingly", others are scared of the implications of this rebellion, so they try to comfort themselves with fact-free fairy tales of "both sides doing it".

    Meanwhile, this all ends today if Boehner brings the bill to the floor. But he won't. So, one side's kinda to blame, innit?

    October 7, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    " Fifty-seven percent of Americans are also angry at the way the Democrats are dealing with the shutdown. And a 53% majority say they are also angry at President Obama."
    -------------------------------
    I wonder how many of those people are aware of the fact that the funding bill is only for a few weeks, and that the Tea Party would be doing this all over again before the end of the year, if not Thanksgiving. I don't think they understand the ramifications of what the Tea Party has done, and continues to do.

    The Tea Party clailms that Pres. Obama won't negotiate. What is there to negotiate? What are they offering? Nohting. They are only seeking to take something away.

    October 7, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    WaPo-ABC poll just showed:

    70% disapprove of the way GOPers/Teatrolls are handling the shutdown
    61% disapprove of Dems etc.
    51% disapprove of Obama.

    But again, you have to keep in mind that this is a pyrrhic victory in the GOP/Teatrolls' minds. If they're going down, at least they take everyone else with them AND they simultaneously create the situation that makes the entire gov't look broken, all because they broke it. This is why the false equivalency paradigm in the MSM....living by the ridiculous axiom that "as long as we report everything as both sides' faults and everything as equal, then we're proving we're not biased"...is actually something that works completely in the GOP/Teatrolls' favor. They're out to prove gov't is broken and are doing everything they can to break it to prove it...so why would they care if EVERYONE gets blamed equally instead of all blame just falling on the Dems? It's still "mission accomplished" and the MSM helps them accomplish it.

    October 7, 2013 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  4. mjag_kjag

    TEA party – Treason by Eunuchs and Anarchists

    October 7, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  5. Wisemann

    Republicans say they want to stop piling more and more debt on future generations of Americans...I do not buy it! What future generations of Americans? 2 or 3 generations down the road all you ll get to see in this country is all kinds of Hispanics, Chinese or other folks of indefinite genetic origin the color of rotten mustard. You ll have to book an appointment a week in advance just to be able to see an American in an American town.

    October 7, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  6. BO

    Basically it's 50/50. Obama is losing ground quickly for refusing to negotiate.

    October 7, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  7. John

    A CNN poll isn't scientific

    October 7, 2013 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  8. Stig Jorgensen

    Never have this country needed a third party more than today. If we had an independent party whose policies would be towards the middle of Republican and Democrats we would not be in this situation

    October 7, 2013 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  9. Fred

    Says a biased left survey.

    October 7, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. zappo15

    These polls are not believable. The blame is clear.

    October 7, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  11. Carol

    I did not see the survey....my vote is against Obama...whether he believes it or not...HE is a big part of the not willing to bend and holding this country hostage.
    Any person that points the fingers as he does AND takes no responsibility in what is going on it a narcissistic dictator.
    Please make my vote count because I see this as a slanted voting % that you are putting out for the public!

    October 7, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  12. Ken

    And this is why the Republicans feel they can stand pat. 63% angry at them, 53% at Obama. That 53% consists of most of the people who voted for the Republicans. And polls show that when push comes to shove in an election, those folks will still vote for the Republican over the Democrat in their districts. As a matter of fact, so many states went to Republican control in 2010 (the rise of the TEA Party) that the redistricting done by 2012 favors keeping many of the existing Republican seats as very secure in 2014, despite what is going on. I've heard several pundits predict that the result of this whole mess may (amazingly) have little to no effect on the 2014 elections to come. Hence neither side in this struggle feels a need to do anything.

    October 7, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  13. John Lee

    "Independents are equally angry at all sides, with 59% of Independents very or somewhat angry at the Democrats, six in 10 angry at the GOP, and 58% angry at Obama." - Isn't this all six in ten? Or is it CNN's way of siding with the Democrats when they are statistically tied?

    October 7, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  14. Jozo

    Of course, they blame is tilted more at the GOP, when you have news outlets, mocking the GOP and reading DNC talking points how could it not be?

    October 7, 2013 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  15. Allen Gingrich

    It must be remembered that most adults get their news from Fox News, so of course the Republicans message of "It's the Democrats fault for not compromising" is making its way into the national conversation as the truth, when it couldn't be any further from it.

    October 7, 2013 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  16. daveinla

    Keep it shut down. 50% of the federal government is not needed...its just waste.

    October 7, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  17. tullymd

    The real blame of course goes to the American voter.

    October 7, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  18. Rob W

    A CNN poll shows people are more angry at GOP then Dems. Now that's news!

    October 7, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  19. LK

    stat can be manipulated to take a side. I don't generally believe these numbers!!!

    October 7, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  20. joyce

    Shutdown was started over Obamacare and because that didn't work Cruz and his buddies are trying everything else and it don't look like tht is going to work either.

    October 7, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  21. The fact of the matter

    If a CNN poll finds that there are more people mad at Republicans then you can bet your boots an unbiased poll would find considerably in the other direction.

    October 7, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  22. EDWARD

    The Media isn't fooling any of us. The shutdown isn't causing all the hoopla, but rather the media itself. President Obama in the headlines of a story put out by the AP on September 27, 2013 said "he would not negotiate with the Republicans". We the People elected our Representatives to stop the Spending in DC. We also are not stupid and know that a 2500 page Bill that we commonly call Obamacare with 120,000 page of additional regulations based on those 2500 pages is dangerous as is for this Nation. Our Representatives have a right to defund or change this gigantic fiasco. Therefore despite the lies Obama has told about how he will negotiate anytime when the AP quoted him saying he wouldn't that we have a problem not with the Republicans, but with Obama, Reid, and the Democrats. The MEDIA should tell the truth and quit carrying to water for Obama. It is not helping this Nation to go on with this farce!

    October 7, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  23. Bob

    Republicans have been openly planning this government shut down for months.

    October 7, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  24. Anonymous

    leave it shut down it doesn't work for the people anyway

    October 7, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  25. trev

    Most Americans also believe that the seasons are caused by fluctuating solar output. What's your point?

    October 7, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
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