Op-Ed: Yet another poll blames GOP for shutdown

Posted Oct 3, 2013 by William M. Schmalfeldt
Yet another poll released Thursday shows more Americans blame Republicans for the current US Government shutdown than they do President Obama or the Democrats.
Yet, in the alternative Tea Party reality, they couldn't be happier about the way things are turning out.
On day three of the partial government shutdown, a new CBS News poll reveals that a large majority of Americans disapprove of the shutdown and more are blaming Republicans than President Obama and the Democrats for it.
Fully 72 percent of Americans disapprove of shutting down the federal government over differences on the Affordable Care Act; just 25 percent approve of this action. Republicans are divided: 48 percent approve, while 49 percent disapprove. Most tea party supporters approve of the government shutdown - 57 percent of them do. Disapproval of the shutdown is high among Democrats and independents. This CBS News poll was conducted after the partial government shutdown began on October 1.
But who gets the blame?
Republicans in Congress receive more of the blame for the shutdown: 44 percent of Americans blame them, while 35 percent put more blame on President Obama and the Democrats in Congress. These views are virtually the same as they were last week before the shutdown, when Americans were asked who they would blame if a shutdown occurred.
Meanwhile, Tea Party favorites like Rep. Michelle Bachmann are just as giddy as geese about the closing of the federal government and the fact that millions of federal employees are affected, government services are shut down, and children with cancer will not get potentially lifesaving treatment at the National Institutes of Health.
According to Talking Points Memo:
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) on Wednesday said she wasn't worried about Republicans caving to pressure to end the government shutdown because "this is about the happiest" she's seen her conservative colleagues in a long time.
Appearing with colleague Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), Bachmann told Fox News host Sean Hannity that she believes there has been "strong unity" between conservatives on almost every budget vote.
"This is about the happiest I've seen members in a long time, because we see we are starting to win this dialogue on a national level," she said.
(Full Disclosure: This was a writer/editor at the National Institutes of Health before retiring due to advanced Parkinson's disease in 2011.)