The shutdown has unambiguously backfired on the Republicans who started it, according to a pretty brutal new poll out from NBC and the Wall Street Journal on Thursday. The results were released just as Republican leaders walked away without a deal from a White House meeting on increasing the debt limit. According to the result, 52 percent of Americans blame Republicans for the shutdown, while 31 percent blame President Obama. And that margin of blame for the GOP is even higher than it was in the 1995 shutdown.
The GOP currently has a 24 percent approval rating, according to the poll, while the Tea Party is even lower, at 21 percent. Both of those figures are all-time lows, similar to the results of a recent Gallup poll indicating that the party is at its lowest popularity for at least the past few decades.
Here are the rest of the approval tests in the poll, ranked from most to least favorable:
- President Obama: 47 percent favorable, 41 percent unfavorable
- Democratic Party: 39 percent favorable, 40 percent unfavorable
- Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas 14 percent favorable, 28 percent unfavorable
- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid 18 percent favorable, 32 percent unfavorable
- House Speaker John Boehner: 17 percent favorable, 42 percent unfavorable
- Tea Party: 21 percent favorable, 47 percent unfavorable
- Republican Party 24 percent favorable, 53 percent unfavorable
But wait, it gets worse for Republicans.
Remember a few weeks ago, when Republicans refused to pass a "clean" Continuing Resolution to fund the government without also doing some damage to Obamacare? Remember Ted Cruz's filibuster/thesis statement on why the American people would accept a shutdown for the sake of getting rid of an unpopular law? Since the shutdown, Obamacare has become more popular. Popularity of the law, still in a minority, jumped from 31 percent to 38 percent in a month according to their results. The percentage of those Americans who see the law as a bad idea declined by one point, from 44 percent to 43 percent.
Compared to a September CNBC poll, NBC notes, the percentage of Americans who oppose eliminating funding for Obamacare, even in the face of a partial government shut down, rose from 46 percent to 50 percent. And apparently, a slim majority of Americans now believe the government should do more to solve problems, not less. In June, Americans were split 48-to-48 percent on that question. Now? It's 52 percent for more, 44 percent for less.
Previous polls have had better results for Republicans, indicating that Obama isn't weathering his shutdown as cleanly as Bill Clinton did his. But even the NBC poll doesn't have good news there: according to their results, Obama's favorability rating has remained stable, compared to last month. The poll found one good result for Republicans, however. Americans slimly disapprove of Obama's stance against further negotiation until the government re-opens: 43 percent disapprove, while 40 percent approve.