Americans split over government shutdown: poll

By Agence France-Presse
Wednesday, March 2, 2011 8:35 EDT
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WASHINGTON — Americans are split over a looming government shutdown, with a slight majority viewing it as a positive step towards reining in runaway debt, a poll found Wednesday.

The Quinnipiac University poll found that 46 percent view a shutdown as a “good thing” while 44 percent oppose it because it would result in the loss of public services.

But if the government is shut down, 47 percent of Americans would blame Republicans while just 38 percent would blame President Barack Obama, it said.

The poll found Americans were similarly divided on the hot-button issue of collective bargaining for public employees, with 45 percent saying it should be limited and 42 percent opposing such limits.

Forty-two percent of respondents said government workers are paid too much, while 15 percent said they were paid too little and 35 percent said their pay was “about right,” according to the poll.

“There is a partisan tinge to American voter attitudes toward government workers,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the polling institute.

“By wide margins, Republicans say these workers are overpaid; want them to pay more for their benefits and want to limit collective bargaining.”

The Republican-led House of Representatives approved a stopgap spending measure on Tuesday to avert a government shutdown and give polarized lawmakers two more weeks to grope toward a lasting compromise.

The Democrat-held Senate was to vote on the measure on Wednesday.

The nationwide belt-tightening has meanwhile pitted unions against protesters in Wisconsin and other cash-strapped states that are considering legislation to curtail collective bargaining.

Quinnipiac University conducted the survey February 21-28 among 1,887 registered voters, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.3 percentage points.

Agence France-Presse
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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IA2XCA7JNM6SPZZG4HURXHEYBY Trippin Mczoink

    I would have expected the same, tired old 25 percent John Bircher tinfoil hat wearing shitheads, but 46%?

    America is getting dumber by the minute.

  • DesertWren

    Seems too few Americans watched the documentary “Inside Job.”


    How many of these people polled realize it was Wall Street that doubled the debt of the U.S. not the pay of public workers?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NVKAE5H6DBXJ6SO7MAHH4YUL3A CD

    Yeah, they’re for a shut down until they don’t get what THEY want WHEN they want it, if they have to wait because of downsizing they’ll just blame the lazy govt. workers.

    This is going way back at this point, but all of this crap should make everyone want to insure that all the votes are counted. Al Gore did all of us a disservice by conceding in 2000. I wonder how former Justice O’Connor feels about installing lil’ Georgie now?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IOO5JIYNYXAHBUJRQR6ZV33RVY gail

    This poll seems pretty out of whack compared to others that have been taken

  • Anonymous

    I write as a left-winger who is thoroughly disillusioned with the Democratic Party, fearful of the GOP/TP, and convinced that the South has risen and is winning the second Civil War.

    Having lived in North Texas and learned that confederate culture is irredeemable, I would go a step further than cheering-on a government shutdown. I favor a Constitutional Convention to dissolve the federal government and let the several states realign to fit their respective cultures. The civilized states could join Canada and the Red States would be free to revert to the Dark Ages.

  • Anonymous

    The people who are blaming the teachers and the unions do not watch documentaries or read books. Indoctrinated to distrust knowledge and reason, “these people” are enthusiastically uninformed.

    Ignorance always has been, remains and forever will be the cornerstone of the authoritarian power structures of plutocrats and theocrats.

  • Anonymous

    Does anybody really think those who were polled, actually know what a shutdown would create?