Poll: So Far, Republicans Getting Most Of The Blame For Shutdown

Thomas Phippen | Reporter

Republicans are getting the largest share of the blame for the impending government shutdown, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll released Friday.

Nearly half of those surveyed (48 percent) said the Republican majority in Congress and President Donald Trump are to blame for the situation devolving into a likely shutdown, according to the poll conducted Monday through Thursday, before the House of Representatives passed a short-term funding plan late Thursday.

The poll found that 28 percent of Americans found Democrats in Congress responsible for failing to fund the government past midnight Friday, while 18 percent said the Republicans and Democrats shared equal blame.

“As you may know, the federal government might have to partially shut down later this week if (Trump and Republicans in Congress) and (Democrats in Congress) cannot agree on laws about immigration and border security,” the poll question asked. “Who do you think is mainly responsible for this situation – (Trump and Republicans in Congress) or (the Democrats in Congress)?”

The shutdown fight has been escalating since late 2017 as Congress continued to pass temporary continuing resolutions to fund the government. Democrats seek protection for recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), often styled Dreamers, and it appeared that the White House was close to approving a compromise deal earlier in January.

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Negotiations broke down, partially after reports that Trump asked senators why the U.S. would want more immigrants from “shithole” countries like Haiti and nations in Africa.

Senate Democrats indicated they would refuse to cross the aisle to fund the government, leading the White House to brand it the “Schumer shutdown” after New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, the minority leader.

“The fact remains the only way to guarantee the legal status for DREAMers is to pass DACA protections into law and do it now,” Schumer said Wednesday. “For that reason, a resolution to the DACA issue must be part of a global deal on the budget.”

“There is no cause whatsoever for manufacturing a crisis and holding up funding for the vital services of the federal government,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said. “What’s more, the near-term solution that Congress must pass this week will not only provide uninterrupted government funding. It will also contain a six-year reauthorization of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. We have until Friday to fund the government. I urge my Democratic friends to honor their stated commitments and join in a bipartisan effort to keep the government funded and reauthorize S-CHIP for struggling families across America.”

Trump, on the other hand, has indicated in tweets as president, and during the last government shutdown in 2013, that perhaps a shutdown isn’t so bad.

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