54% of American adults in a poll said that President Trump is the most responsible for the current government shutdown. 31% said congressional Democrats are to blame, with 5% said that of congressional Republicans. 10% of Americans filled out the don’t know category.
The US government is currently 26 days into the longest government shutdown in American history. During a heated and frankly bizarre meeting between Trump and Democratic leaders Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Trump made it repeatedly clear that he would take full ownership in proudly shutting down the government if he didn’t receive $5.7 billion in congressionally appropriated funding for his southern border wall. The Democrats wouldn’t give it to him, and when the actually agreed upon bipartisan bill to fund the government was ready to be passed, Trump at the last minute informed Senate leader Mitch McConnell to block the bill. And the government shut down.
More than 800,000 government workers have gone without pay during the shutdown. With many of them still having to come into work. The government has put out ridiculous pieces of advice to furloughed workers struggling to pay rent and bills, like to barter with your landlord, exchange other services you may be able to provide, or have a carboot sale (a garage sale) to drum up some extra cash.
Yet Trump still won’t budge on his demand for wall money. Threatening recently of course to even call a national emergency over immigrants coming into America from the south, saying the situation mandates it. A ridiculously ‘trumped’ up claim, the explanations of which by Trump spokespeople and the Vice President on various news shows have been overflowing with bigotry, lies and misinformation. All this of course to placate his rabid base. The majority of Republicans back the President in this fight, of course, with only 15% of Republicans saying Trump is most responsible for the shutdown, and 71% saying congressional Democrats are.
70% of American adults however say it is bad strategy for Trump to bring the government to a halt over his wall.
What’s interesting is that men, evangelical Christians, and men without college degrees all said in the majority that shutting down the government over a policy disagreement was not a good idea. These groups all heavily voted for Trump in 2016. A signal that his base is weighing, but I think there is a long while to go yet before you see significant, and permanent movement. Until they really feel the President is hurting their communities and ‘people like them’, or has turned favourable to People of Colour (an of course extremely unlikely scenario), the President’s base will stick with him.
Indeed though government shutdowns have always been unpopular. 56% of US adults think so about this one in a recent Quinnipiac poll, and 53% say so in one by ABC News-Washington Post.
“Shutdowns generally are not very popular,” said Barbara Carvalho, who directs Marist Poll. “It just depends on who ends up owning it.”
The PBS NewsHour and Marist conducted a survey Jan. 10-Jan. 13 that polled 1,023 U.S. adults with a margin of error of 3.8 percentage points, including 873 registered voters with a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.