Poll: Majority Opposes GOP Government Shutdown Plan

A new poll out this morning shows that a majority of Americans oppose the GOP plan to shutdown the government unless the Affordable Care Act is defunded:

A solid majority of Americans oppose defunding the new health care law if it means shutting down the government and defaulting on debt.

The CNBC All-America Economic Survey of 800 people across the country conducted by Hart-McInturff, finds that, in general, Americans oppose defunding Obamacare by a plurality of 44 percent to 38 percent.

Opposition to defunding increases sharply when the issue of shutting down the government and defaulting is included. In that case, Americans oppose defunding 59 percent to 19 percent, with 18 percent of respondents unsure. The final 4 percent is a group of people who want to defund Obamacare, but become unsure when asked if they still hold that view if it means shutting down the government.


A 51 percent majority of Republicans generally support defunding with 36 percent opposed and 13 percent unsure. However, when including the issue of a government shutdown and default, the picture changes: 48 percent of Republicans oppose defunding Obamacare, while 36 percent support it.

However, a 54 percent majority of Republicans who also identify themselves as Tea Party supporters want the new health care law defunded even if it means a government shutdown – the only demographic measured in the poll with such a majority.

Republicans who do not identify themselves as Tea Party supporters hold views closer to those of Democrats than to Republicans that do identify themselves as Tea Party supporters: They oppose defunding Obamacare 44 percent to 36 percent with 20 percent unsure.

Independents are more troubled by the prospect of defunding Obamacare and shutting down the government than the broader population. In general, they oppose defunding by a slight plurality of 44 percent to 40 percent. However, when the issue of shutting down the government is included, opposition to the measure swells to 65 percent, while support drops to just 14 percent.

No doubt we’ll see other polling on this issue over the coming days. What it says may go a long way in determining how the GOP proceeds in the wake of the House CR’s inevitable defeat in the Senate.

FILED UNDER: Congress, Deficit and Debt, Healthcare Policy, Public Opinion Polls, US Politics, , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held 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. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Where’s the Unskewed Polls guy when you need him?

  2. Ben says:

    The House GOP doesn’t give a rodent’s derriere what the majority of people want. They think they’re speaking for “real America” and thus will thumb their noses at these (and any other) polls. It’s not like they’re in competitive districts. There is zero point zero chance of there being any sort of electoral punishment for whatever they do.

  3. Mark Ivey says:

    “48 percent of Republicans oppose defunding Obamacare, while 36 percent support it.”

    Accept “Cruz control” or be a RINO.. GOP LoL

  4. al-Ameda says:

    Remember that 27% Crazification Factor?

    We have so many corollaries now – 36% of Republicans support a government shutdown and default. These are the people that GOP state legislators gerrymandered into various districts to ensure almost certain election of nutcase Republican legislators. So far there have been no negative electoral consequences for House Republicans, and I have a hard time seeing how that changes in the 2014 mid-terms.

  5. legion says:

    It doesn’t matter one whit what the nationwide polls say. All that matters is if there are enough GOP “rogues” in the House (and maybe Senate) who think people _in their constituency_ are dumb enough to blame Democrats for all the problems the GOP is creating right now. They’ll happily sacrifice the future of the party to keep their seats now (without having to actually be competent at anything other than lying to their own voters).

    Mark my words: if the GOP goes through with this lunacy – following Ted Cruz’ “leadership” to destroy the government and the economy – you will not see a viable Republican presidential candidate for a generation. The GOP will not take the Senate, and they might just lose the House as well. If enough dead-enders hold onto their power base to make it look viable to still be a “Republican politician”, you might continue to have a Republican Party for a few more years, but once it becomes apparent that the GOP brand is irretrievably damaged, the party will sputter out & cease to exist. The most sociopathic of the bunch will then be “reborn” in a new “Libertarian” party that has no real relation to Libertarianism at all.

    That’s the future of the GOP if they listen to Ted Cruz.

  6. humanoid.panda says:

    @al-Ameda: Before now, they managed to avoid shutting down the government and/or defaulting on debt. We will see what happens if the rubber actually hits the road this time…

  7. PJ says:

    The GOP shouldn’t worry, according to the media, it’s not up to the media to tell us who’s to blame.
    Both sides do it, yadayadayada….

  8. Argon says:

    Due to the nature of the party primary systems the House GOP is beholden to its fringe or about 10%-15% of the population. Why should they care about what most others want?

  9. Ben says:

    That was exactly my point …

  10. Jim M says:

    Why do the Republicans forget History so quickly ? The 1995-1996 Goverment Shutdown led by Newt Gingrich shut it down for 28 days and made the Republicans look really bad. They controlled Congress so they shut the govt down. Clinton came out looking really good after this. So the same thing will happen again. If I were President Obama I would veto the bill and let the govt shut down. He can reap the benefits of the Republicans getting slammed over shutting it down…They will never learn…You cant shut down the govt and win public support…