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. LittleDrummerBoy

    The "Do-Nothing" congress (80th – 1947 ~ 1949) had NOTHING on these guys...

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  2. IceMan

    It is mentally lazy to say "both sides are to blame". One side is WAY more to blame than the other. The side that wants to get a law changed by by breaking from procedure.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  3. Kevin RUSS

    Why people need everything to be equal from a Republican and Democrat perspective is ever so challenging to understand. Everyone knows the truth, the Republicans in the house have taking this extreme position given they are underhanded with respect to controlling our government and do not have the votes to pass the laws they see fit. But, the difference is this minority in our government is willing to put everything at risk to get what they want. So, are the Democrats going to give in to their extor tion plot? Are they to laydown and say yes, if you place the full faith and credit of this country at risk then you will get what you want? Please people, we all know who is at fault here, and we dont need no poll to figure this one out.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  4. tom l

    Paul Krugman or someone on the Daily Kos must have used the term "false equivalency" lately. It's the new talking point for the left.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  5. manuelpeters

    I believe that the first group of people to go to mars should be the members of the us congress. They could work there as well as in dc. They are not doing anything for us here. They might as well be on mars.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  6. slason

    This poll just goes to show how gullible and uneducated the general populace is. Never has a party tried to destroy a standing law that has nothing to do with a debt increase. Debt increases are about paying last years bills and have nothing to do with legislation and should not be used as a bargaining chip (blackmail). It's OBVIOUS that the Republican Party has gone beyond common sense and politics to push their ideology on everyone...funny how they claim it was "shoved down their throat" in the first place. We already had our credit rating lowered in 2010 over this "game" (costing another 12 billion a year for taxpayers). This falls SQUARELY on the Republicans. Sad that so many are gullible to id4eology and ignorance.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  7. JC

    Good, I agree with those numbers. The Republicans' "we won't pass a budget until we get our way" is crappy, but so is the Democrats' "we don't negotiate until you pass our budget unconditionally." Both are putting political gains ahead of the good of the country. We need to lock them all in a room with no food until they get a budget signed.

    October 7, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  8. Fish

    The amount of confusion caused by the disinformation campaign has been astounding which I blame primarily on the Rotten Right simply because it masks the fact they have no plan, ideas, solutions or anything but useless rhetoric. Now the dems of course have a long history of pulling defeat from the jaws of victory because they can't stay on message. All told American's politicians make Chinese cluster flocks look organized!!!

    October 7, 2013 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  9. Kevin RUSS

    Why people need everything to be equal from a Republican and Democrat perspective is ever so challenging to understand. Everyone knows the truth, the Republicans in the house have taking this extreme position given they are underhanded with respect to controlling our government and do not have the votes to pass the laws they see fit. But, the difference is this minority in our government is willing to put everything at risk to get what they want. So, are the Democrats going to give in to their plot? Are they to laydown and say yes, if you place the full faith and credit of this country at risk then you will get what you want? NO! Please people, we all know who is at fault here, and we dont need no poll to figure this one out.

    October 7, 2013 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Kevin RUSS

    Why people need everything to be equal from a Republican and Democrat perspective is ever so challenging to understand. Everyone knows the truth, the Republicans in the house have taking this extreme position given they are underhanded with respect to controlling our government and do not have the votes to pass the laws they see fit. But, the difference is this minority in our government is willing to put everything at risk to get what they want. So, are the Democrats going to give? Are they to say if you place the full faith and credit of this country at risk then you will get what you want? Please people, we all know who is at fault here, and we dont need no poll to figure this one out.

    October 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  11. m

    i'm really regretting the few republicans that i chose for my fantasy congress team.

    October 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  12. Lenny Pincus

    Rep. Devin Nunes, a conservative Republican from California’s Central Valley, on Monday accused freshman GOP Sen. Ted Cruz of lying to House Republicans that they could dismantle the Democratic health care reform law known as Obamacare by forcing a government shutdown.

    October 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  13. Alan Crawford

    Mr. President, don't flinch!

    Al

    October 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  14. downsjm

    Unfortunately this is what is needed to bring this to resolution. We need our President to lead; and we need our congress, especially the Tea Party members, allow themselves to be led (i.e. compromise!). This country voted for divided government because we are intelligent enough to know that both sides have good points but we need to meet in the middle and advance this economy...its dying a slow and painful death and its time to act.

    October 7, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  15. Colo001

    You people are too much. All this complaining and only 17% of the Government is actually shut,. Someone please tell me what is affected for them?

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  16. Barb

    Let me guess, the millions on welfare are the ones concerned. They're afraid they'll lose their 'free' ride.

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  17. Strangways

    I honestly don't get it – both sides are dysfunctional, but THIS MESS is completely on the Republicans. What is Obama supposed to do – immediately withdraw ACA (even though it's the LAW now)? Think the republicans would say, "OK, great, now let's work together?" No, they'd just demand more and more, with other deadlines... more conditions. O HAS to stand up to them. This is the red line.

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  18. Kevin

    Why people need everything to be equal from a Republican and Democrat perspective is ever so challenging to understand. Everyone knows the truth, the Republicans in the house have taking this extreme position given they are underhanded with respect to controlling our government and do not have the votes to pass the laws they see fit. But, the difference is this minority in our government is willing to put everything at risk to get what they want. So, are the Democrats going to give in to their extortion plot? Are they to laydown and say yes, if you place the full faith and credit of this country at risk then you will get what you want? NO! Please people, we all know who is at fault here, and we dont need no damn poll to figure this one out.

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    Of course both sides are taking a hit because of the media's obsession with false equivalencies and the need to appear not to take sides. anyone with an ounce of critical thinking skills know none of this would be happening if the Republicans didn't decide to use the shutdown to gain leverage in their incessant attempts to dismantle Obamacare and to starve the government of revenue necessary to function.

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  20. Henry Boswell

    I am just a normal citizen who is very concerned about our democracy.

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  21. Rene William

    CNN Polls are god for one thing – sticking up the ase of Harry Reid and Nancy "Crypt Keeper" Pelosi . . . these polls would be saying the same thing if a R were in office and R's were running things, so, enough already . . you're boring those of us who know better . . .

    October 7, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  22. ltinny

    Absolutely right to Wake up People

    There is no false equivalency in this show. The GOPT owns it entirely.

    October 7, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  23. Dan

    No one truly understands American politics like average citizens. Good thing they don't base their opinions upon misrepresentation and emotion; that would be awful.

    October 7, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  24. Iggy

    Here comes a military coup

    October 7, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  25. Lardoggy

    Both sides should be getting the heat,both parties have been fighting over who wins the power and not working for the people and its been going on for god knows how long 40 or 50 years now.I know I've been voting for 40 years and now the debt is at 17 trillion,give me a break and stop the money maddest now.I have to balance my check book so sure the government,and I should have the same health care choice that the politicians have also!

    October 7, 2013 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
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