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. givemeabreak

    Why does the President have to negotiate on something that is the law and has been upheld? They should have shut down the Gov't when Bush started the Iraq war which is a major contributor this nation's debt. Many thought that the war should never have been started, but they didn't shut the Gov't down because they didn't agree with it. Maybe, the Gov't should be shut down until they agree to cut all of the tax breaks to oil companies. Pacifiers and warm milk for all the Republicans.

    October 7, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  2. J

    Can we please dispense with this fiction that we just stumbled into this shutdown? I cannot believe how poor the coverage has been on this issue. Total journalistic abdication. What a disgrace.

    October 7, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  3. Beverly

    Remember these are the same people who said they would not work with this President. I am so sick of Boehner and Cantor trying to tell us that the President won't meet with them. Why should he, everytime he meets with them they run to the camera for their 15 minutes and it is always the President won't do anything. They planned this shutdown for months, that is why they wasted time voting 43 times to repeal Obamacare. The knew exactly what they were doing. PEOPLE HAVE THE POWER ""VOTE THEN OUT OF OFFICE NOW""!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 7, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  4. SteveInMA

    1. CNN falsely reports that the problem is caused by both sides.
    2. CNN conducts public opinion poll, and finds that its viewers incorrectly believe the problem is caused by both sides.
    3. CNN reports the self-fulfilling poll results as fact, and pretends it is not culpable in this misinformation.
    The death of American journalism.

    Quoted for Truth! Thanks to the original poster!

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  5. sonny chapman

    Hey John-Obama also thought that the Fever Would Break. He underestimated Repub. hate.

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  6. cebundy

    It looks quite clear to me that the shutdown is solely the fault of the GOP. They had sworn that they would shutdown the government for two years now. It didn't matter to them what issue they chose, they were going to do it anyway so that the tea party could show that nation how powerful they are. The GOP establishment created this mess by their gerrymandering of the districts giving inordinate power to the minority. The tea party wants to punish the majority of Americans for electing and re-electing a black President. The wealthy conservatives that fund the tea party just want to exploit American workers and resources. If the Demos were to back down in the face of the GOP, you can bet the next things they will be shutting the government down over are Social Security and Medicare.

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  7. Guest

    You know, it's funny.. There are always a ton of "vote This Guy or That Guy out in 2014!".. but watch 90% of the House get reelected. Why? Because for all of the fury, half of you won't even go to the polls, and nearly all the rest of you will vote solely on party affiliation without any critical thought whatsoever and pat yourselves on the back all the way home.

    Nothing will change until this generation gives up the levers of government. Better hope the next one is better at governing because Baby Boomers are a lost cause.

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  8. TheTraveler

    America simply careens from one crisis to another anymore.

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  9. Tony in STL

    Its a one trick pony. We all know that the repubs have once again kicked themselves in the butt. Try to spin however you want. They're toast. Mostly self-inflicted damage.

    October 7, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  10. Pat Sizemore

    Both sides share the blame.. Acting like 5 year olds.. If they can not all get together and reason this out like grown men and women, then they don't deserve to hold a office and this includes the President who is suppose to be the leader.. Notice, I did not say Democrats or Republicans in these remarks merely grown men and women.. I do not care what party you are for or against, if they can't work together to solve problems, then we need to get rid of all of them. I am so sick and tired of all of this .

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  11. Carrie

    Both parties are to blame they hate each other, if the Democrats would of worked with the Republicans regarding Obamacare instead of hurrying up and passing it before they lost the house then maybe just maybe the Republicans would not be doing this...and I am not saying that Republicans have the right to do what they are doing they DON'T both parties just make me sick!!!!!

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  12. peyman

    i wonder if barak obama can get some of the money that he gave to auto companies to feed the union bosses back to solve this problem .i am guessing he cant . he bought votes with it after all

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  13. ryan

    Blame to go around? No. The Republicans deserve the blame. They are petulant children who, upon not getting their way, have decided to destroy the country.

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  14. Steve

    Liberal think tank cannot conjure up angle to blame Bush.

    Story at 6.

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  15. Peter

    you can do all the polls you want, but the politicans don't care because they know the American people will conitune re-electing the same incompetent people.

    October 7, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  16. george cook

    PEG...come on "quit Parroting the DEM Mantra..it is clear that the GOP has forwarded to the ( Obstructinist ) Senate bills to keep almost all of the Fed agencies going...but MR NO/Reid in the Senate won't let the member even vote on them....

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  17. Jrad

    Well, we elected them....

    Then again, the options were somewhat limited. Perhaps I shouldn't bother voting next time.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  18. wildman38

    Obama shouldn't have ever been elected as President in the first place. He will go down in history as the worst US president we have ever had.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  19. Lardeau

    All of this is utter utter baloney. We all know that it will get settled soon. It was just so much grandstanding by the clowns. Nothing will have changed and we will be going down this same credit crunch road again in another very short time. The entire money system simply does not work. It needs a radical radical change so it does not get created with an automatic interest coupon tied to it.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  20. bruce morningstar

    What a joke! Why can't the Republicans pass a clean CR? This is not for politics but for the US. And some clown said no problem if Romney was the President. Give me a break. Romney would have us in wars in Libya, Syria, and Iran (And maybe Korea). He would have giv3n the rich a huge tax cut, lowered the minimum wage and treated women like slaves. And he would have screwed the 47% because he did not care about Americans. To solve our immigration probems we should either deport the Republicans in Congress or lock them up in GITMO. They are much greater terrorists than the people locked up there.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  21. bill

    Hey GOP you lost to Obama (twice) now get over it and stop blocking the Country's business and just focus on doing your jobs! Everyone knows that all you are trying to do is prohibit a signature piece of legislation by Obama that Americans have asked for, that Congress passed and that the US Supreme Court approved. The GOP got their way the past 13 years and drove this country into the Great Recession. The GOP has ZERO credibility when it comes to sound fiscal policies, family values, the economy or the will of ALL Americans. All this is is a grudge match against Obama for doing his job that dubya wasn't man enough to do.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  22. TJC

    Glad to see people finally calling CNN out on there bad journalism on this topic. All the facts including the Republican's own rhetoric make it clear that Republicans are solely responsible for this mess. Journalists love to make it look like both sides are on equal footing. That way they can make things seem more controversial. Sort of like what journalists have done concerning vaccine safety and global warming (all the facts on one side, but in the media it's "balanced" and each side is treated as if their opinions are equally valid). Additionally, with congressional approval ratings at 10% it's popular to get on the blame everyone bandwagon and make this into the common man versus the government situation with the added bonus that it doesn't alienate their republican viewers.

    October 7, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  23. wildman38

    Long legged mac daddy is the Worst pres we have ever had!

    October 7, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  24. Logic N LA

    CNN- 400,000 military workers have been told to go back to work according to reports over the weekend. This is based on the fact that they will be getting paid when all this is over.
    As for blame- all deserve blame but for different reasons and for lack of concern for the American public and our finances.

    October 7, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  25. Benita

    Don't say that is both sides to blame. The only guilty party is the Republican Party. They made up the crisis.

    October 7, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
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