Unlike previous trends, Independents look more like Democrats than Republicans when it comes to partially shutting down the government in order to right the wrongs of Obamacare. Three-quarters of Independents join 86 percent of Democrats in disapproving of this action, according to a CBS News survey. More noteworthy, Republicans are split: 48 percent approval to 49 percent disapproval.
By 59 to 38 percent, even those who oppose Obamacare believe a partial government shutdown is not the way to go. A government shutdown divides Republicans and flips the anti-Obamacare coalition, which is why the shutdown stopped revolving around the health care law several days ago.
Instead of focusing Americans' attention on Obamacare's troubled rollout, the shutdown distracted them from it:
The news that did break through about the health care exchanges was widely negative, according to a new AP poll. Only 27 percent had a positive opinion regarding the rollout, while 40 percent think things are going not too well or worse. In a preview of what health care looks like with greater federal government control, 73 percent of those attempting to sign up experienced problems.
Unfortunately, instead of shinning a spotlight on these real-life problems, this story was overrun by debate over which parts of the government to fund, the National Park Service shutting down open-air memorials, the shameful lapse of benefits for families of fallen soldiers, and others along the same line.The blame game works against the GOP:
We entered the government shutdown certain of one thing: there will be no shortage of blame to go around. Above 50 percent in January, President Obama’s job approval now registers in the low-to-mid 40’s, and voters are increasingly pessimistic about the direction of the country. After tempering in late 2012, Americans believe the nation is on the wrong track today by greater than 2-to-1.
The complicating factor for Republicans is that they’re viewed less favorably than Democrats, so more voters perceive them as culpable. Voters are more likely to blame Republican leaders than President Obama or congressional Democrats by 8 to 13 points, according to several polls.
These margins are consistent with opinions of swing voters. Independents are more likely to fault Republicans (40 percent) than Obama/Democrats (30 percent) or both (24 percent), per CBS News. That’s in line with the Fox News poll: Republicans (40 percent), Obama/Democrats (27 percent), and both (32 percent).
Moreover, majorities of Independents disapprove of how all parties are handling the fiscal stalemate, but once again more blame falls on Republicans. According to the Washington Post/ABC News poll, 54 percent of Independents disapprove of President Obama (39 percent strongly), 63 percent disapprove of Democrats in Congress (45 percent strongly), and 71 percent disapprove of Republicans (50 percent strongly).