Half blame Republicans for ongoing shutdown

October 05, 2013, 5:00 AM GMT+0

Half the public blames Congressional Republicans for the ongoing shutdown, and Democrats are more opposed to compromising than Republicans are.

The government shutdown that began on October 1st appears to show no signs of ending, as President Obama cancelled a long-planned trip to Asia in order to stay in DC and work to end the shutdown. The real power in this shutdown, however, lays with Congress, whose leaders need to reach a deal on government spending in order to re-open the federal government. So far the consequences of the shutdown have been limited as essential services remain open - though funding has been cut to a program to provide healthy food to new mothers - but federal courts will have to dramatically cut their workload on October 10th, meaning that consequences may begin to be more widely felt.

The latest research from YouGov, conducted in the first two days of the shutdown, shows that half (50%) of Americans blame Republicans in Congress for the continuing shutdown. 11% blame Democrats in Congress while 29% blame President Obama for not ending the shutdown. This divides along partisan lines, with Democrats tending to blame Republicans and Republicans tending to blame the President or Democrats. Independents, however, are largely split, with 41% blaming Republicans in Congress and 33% blaming the President.

The chances of ending the shutdown soon appear to be low, however, as a majority of voters in each party do not want to compromise in order to re-open the government. As it currently stands, the major concession each side would make centers on whether or not Obamacare will be delayed by a year or not. 52% of Republicans do not want Congress to compromise in the current shutdown, while 35% do want Congress to compromise.

Interestingly, Democrats are even more opposed to compromise on their part than Republicans are. 58% of Democrats do not want President Obama to compromise while only 24% want the President to compromise and, potentially, agree to delaying Obamacare by a year.

14% of Americans say that they have been affected by the federal shutdown, while 69% say that they have not. The most common reason (38%) was that people were unable to use a federal service, but 29% of those who have been affected have close relatives who are or are themselves furloughed federal workers.