More Bad Poll Numbers For The GOP On Government Shutdown

Eight hours into a shutdown that began more with a whimper than a bang as the House came up with the rather lame-brained idea of finally, after five months, suggesting a Conference Committee, though on the CR not on the budget, we get more polling indicating that the GOP may have backed itself into a corner:

A new Quinnipiac University poll released on Tuesday shows voters overwhelmingly oppose Congress shutting down the federal government as a way to stop the 2010 health care law from being implemented, matching other public polling that shows that Democrats enter the shutdown with the upper hand.

The Quinnipiac poll also shows Democrats with a 9-point lead on the 2014 House generic ballot — a historically wide edge, despite the structural advantages that make a Democratic takeover of the House unlikely.

Overall, the poll shows voters are split on the health care law: 45 percent support it, while 47 percent oppose it. Other polls have shown stronger opposition to the law, however.

But despite their overall ambivalence toward the law, voters oppose efforts to defund it. Just 34 percent think Congress should cut off funding, and support is even lower when those defunding efforts are tied to a government shutdown (22 percent) or raising the debt limit (27 percent). A wide majority, 72 percent, oppose shutting down the government to cut off funding the health care law.

(…)

Looking ahead to the 2014 elections, Democrats lead Republicans on the generic ballot, the poll shows, 43 percent to 34 percent. Four percent of registered voters say they prefer someone else, 2 percent wouldn’t vote, and 17 percent are undecided.

The 9-point advantage is the largest Quinnipiac has measured since the spring of 2009, in the first months of the Obama administration. The yawning lead isn’t that inconsistent with other Quinnipiac surveys conducted this year: In two July surveys, for example, Democrats held 4- and 5-point leads.

Despite the Democratic advantage on this question, GOP retention of the House seems likely at this stage. The generic ballot has overstated Democratic support in the past, and the Quinnipiac poll is a survey of all registered voters, many of whom won’t cast ballots in a midterm election.

Indeed, a Generic Ballot among Registered Voters this far out doesn’t really tell us much of anything useful. Nonetheless, the negative numbers that the GOP is getting over it’s performance during the shutdown crisis, which will quickly morph into a crisis over the debt ceiling if not resolved quickly, is not something that the party can afford to dismiss. Perhaps if the shutdown only lasts a couple days, which given how things went on Capitol Hill last night seems unlikely, then things won’t be so bad. If this goes on, however, then perhaps political pressure will force some action here.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2014, Congress, Deficit and Debt, Health Care, Public Opinion Polls, Quick Takes, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020.

Comments

  1. superdestroyer says:

    So would the polling numbers for the Republicans be better if they vote for a complete Democratic Party victory. The Republicans are going to be blame for anything negative that happens no matter who is really at fault. Why should the Republicans give the Democrats a complete victory when they will be blamed for anything that goes wrong in the future.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Why should the Republicans give the Democrats a complete victory

    In what world is keeping the government functioning a “complete Democratic victory”? Please tell me, because I am going to avoid it if at all possible. The people there are bat-sh!t looney.

  3. superdestroyer says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    If the Democrats get the spending authority they want and the borrowing authority they want, then it is a massive win for the Democrats. If the Democrats push off any choices on spending, taxes, or the debt for another year, it is a massive win for the Democrats.

    Every budget decision that is pushed off to the future is a win for the Democrats.

  4. Ben says:

    @superdestroyer:

    The Democratic victory was 3 years ago, when the PPACA passed. All the Republicans are doing now is holding a gun to the country’s head now to prevent it’s implementation.

  5. Christopher M says:

    @Ben: And yet the actions the Republicans are taking do nothing to prevent the implementation of the law. They’re not just tilting at windmills, they’re tilting at thin air.

  6. LaMont says:

    @superdestroyer:

    The Democrats got that victory in the 2012 presidential election! You’re delusional!

  7. Rob in CT says:

    Please note how the GOP base sees this, as perfectly illustrated by super. Failing to extract concessions for raising the debt ceiling = total Democratic victory.

    Whereas we see it as no victory at all. It’s just avoiding a self-induced crisis that should never have been viewed as a leverage point.

    GOP Delenda Est. Bring back the Whigs.

  8. Moosebreath says:

    @superdestroyer:

    “So would the polling numbers for the Republicans be better if they vote for a complete Democratic Party victory”

    Really, the Democrats are asking the Republicans as a condition of this continuing resolution, to vote for tax increases on the wealthy, an immigration bill with a path to citizenship, a carbon tax, an end to the sequester, and other items on their wish list? Because that’s what it would take to get a “complete Democratic Party victory” anything near as great as the one the Republicans are trying to get.

  9. Grumpy says:

    @LaMont: And since then we’ve out that almost everything the president claimed about Obamacare was politely – not true..

    It will help less people than expected, but it will hurt a lot of people..

    Millions of people are finding out they will not be able to keep their insurance.. or their doctors

    Millions more will be forced into part time employment.. Since now it will take 3 part timers to fill the jobs two full timers used to have, there will be more jobs the president can take credit for creating.. Won’t matter to him that instead of lifting one person up he’s pulled two down..

    The IRS In Charge– Given their history of oppressing Obama’s political enemies I don’t want to think where that might lead- But I’ll feel safer with conservatives back in charge and liberals on the receiving end..

    And for all the talk about the 1996 shutdown- in 98 the GOP actually picked up seats.. According to Gallup, both parties took a short term hit in the polls, but it didn’t last..

    If you work for the government, and are one of the lucky ones, enjoy a few days off,, In all 17 of the previous shutdowns, laid off Government employees were paid for the time they missed.

  10. john personna says:

    @Grumpy:

    I don’t believe much of that is true at all. It reads like a talk show rant, unconnected to facts or figures. Got charts?

  11. David in KC says:

    @john personna: you know, the last time my employer switched plans, I couldn’t keep my doctor. That happened while Bush was President. Guess that must have been his fault.

  12. superdestroyer says:

    @LaMont:

    so is the argument really that since President Obama won in 2012, the Repubicans in Congress should do whatever the president wants. Should the Republicans really support programs that are designed to create more automatic Democratic Party voters, grow the size and scope o the government, and turn the U.S. into a one party state.

  13. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Grumpy:

    Citations please, or its horsesh!t.

  14. LaMont says:

    @Grumpy:

    That is what you call a bad horror STORY! Much a part of the ongoing reason that Obamacare has been demonized by name only. As long as you can’t provide any basis for your far fetched premise, you are part of the problem and you are being used like a puppet! I wish I had millions to spend – maybe I could get you to think the way I’d like you to!

  15. Moosebreath says:

    @superdestroyer:

    “so is the argument really that since President Obama won in 2012, the Repubicans in Congress should do whatever the president wants”

    Read @Moosebreath: this. Read it again. If you need the long words explained to you, please ask.

  16. LaMont says:

    @superdestroyer:

    so is the argument really that since President Obama won in 2012, the Repubicans in Congress should do whatever the president wants.

    Rather what the people that elected the president wants! CNN polls show that approximately 70% oppose a shutdown. 69% feels that the republicans in the house are actimg like spoiled brats. Most importantly, 38% favors Obamacare. 11% don’t favor it becuase they feel it didn’t go far enough while 39% oppose the law becuase they feel it is too liberal. So 49% favors the law or feel the law should go further to 39% that does not favor it. Again I state, the democrats won during the presidential election in 2012. This wasn’t by accident. At this point, the GOP and conservatives like you are all acting like sore a** losing spoiled brats!

  17. Tillman says:

    @Grumpy:

    If you work for the government, and are one of the lucky ones, enjoy a few days off, In all 17 of the previous shutdowns, laid off Government employees were paid for the time they missed.

    Ha ha, what? I have friends who work in DC, and they are pissed off. Probably because they still have to pay for rent, electricity, food to name a few while Congress twiddles its thumbs. The government shut down; landlords and the human body did not.

    By the way, you remember how our economy is something like seventy percent consumer spending? What do you think happens when hundreds of thousands of federal employees suddenly have no money to spend?

  18. Tillman says:

    @superdestroyer: I can’t even write a coherent response to this, it’s so asinine.

  19. superdestroyer says:

    @Tillman:

    Some of the Republicans realize that once an entitlement program is established it is impossible to get rid of it and that entitlement programs usually produce more automatic Democratic Party voters.

    Just like comprehensive immigration reform will lead to the extinction of conservative politics in the U.S., I suspect that nationalizing health care will lead to the same extinction.

  20. David M says:

    @superdestroyer:

    How do you explain the seniors on Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security voting for the GOP in the last couple elections then?

  21. LaMont says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Your problem is that you are so tied up into whos winning or losing that you completely fail to understand or acknowledge that governing is what the people wants when the rubber meets the road. You carry the same “inside the bubble” attitude that many of us blame Washington for. The sick, elderly, government workers be damned!

  22. Tillman says:

    @superdestroyer: No, it’s not your worldview that’s asinine (“conceptually flawed” would be my way of putting it), it’s the idea that the Republicans would be completely caving by voting for a clean continuing resolution to fund the government. This statement ignores basic civics and logic. It ignores basic empiricism. I shouldn’t have to explain how a democracy works to establish why it is wrong, but I feel like leaving anything out would lead to [deliberately seized-upon] miscommunication. It is not “giving the President everything he wants” to pass a continuing resolution to fund the government. Giving the President everything he wants is what Moosebreath already said, and they’re not asking for that at all.

  23. Tillman says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Some of the Republicans realize that once an entitlement program is established it is impossible to get rid of it and that entitlement programs usually produce more automatic Democratic Party voters.

    You’re not arguing for good policy or against bad policy. You’re arguing for the perpetuity of a political party despite how the voters go. Who the hell cares if the Democrats or Republicans survive as parties if the correct policy that happens to be counter to their platforms is enacted and enriches the nation? You’re saying craven political self-preservation trumps the needs and desires of the country as a whole, and that is…words fail me.

  24. fairchilds says:

    @superdestroyer: Ozark: this shutdown has NOTHING to do with budget decisions. They haven’t even debated proposals of budgets! This has to do only with the Republican obsession with Obamacare…..in effect, they were saying sure we will keep the government functioning if you agree to let us damage the health care law. In 2010 the radical republican element even argued that shutdown was desireable. This has been their intent all along: to cripple the government so badly it cannot function. Their ideology is that elected government is too balky and gets in the way of corporatism. Dollars = free speech? Duh.

  25. fairchilds says:
  26. Johnson White says:

    @David M: Let’s see, Old people in the US tend to be racists, fear change and have more investments they want protected and don’t care much about opportunities for younger people?

  27. Johnson White says:

    The congressional GOP are trying to use this procedure to extort powers beyond the restraints of their elected capacity. They don’t have the seats and whitehouse to do what they want so they make the country suffer in a childish tantrum they know can’t work.

  28. Carl Kohlmeyer says:

    The US House of Representatives is an embarrassment to this Democracy. All members of the legislative branch of the US Government should be ashamed of themselves for letting a minority of Republicans hold the country hostage. It is time for members of the Legislative Branch of government to put the interests of the people of the United States before their own narrow personal interests. Try Democracy for a Change.