Poll: Most Americans say Republicans will be to blame if America goes over the fiscal cliff


One of our regular commenters on this blog opined here yesterday that Americans will blame the Democrats if the country falls off the so-called fiscal cliff:

It will be devastating to the Democratic party. Obama and the Democrats are clearly the people in charge of the government right now. Republicans will easily take back the Senate in 2014 and the red carpet will be laid out for a easy victory to the White House in 2016. Then we’ll be talking about Democrats being lost in the wilderness for a generation. All because of the failed fiscal cliff negotiations.

All of that is nonsense, of course, as evidenced by the anxiety among Republican politicians (see HERE) even before THIS came out this morning:

A majority of Americans say that if the country goes over the fiscal cliff on Dec. 31, congressional Republicans should bear the brunt of the blame, according to a new Washington Post-Pew Research Center poll, the latest sign that the GOP faces a perilous path on the issue between now and the end of the year.

While 53 percent of those surveyed say the GOP would (and should) lose the fiscal cliff blame game, just 27 percent say President Obama would be deserving of more of the blame. Roughly one in 10 (12 percent) volunteer that both sides would be equally to blame.

Those numbers are largely unchanged from a Post-Pew survey conducted three weeks ago and suggest that for all of the back and forth in Washington on the fiscal cliff, there has been little movement in public perception. The numbers also explain why Republicans privately fret about the political dangers of going over the cliff, while Democrats are more sanguine about such a prospect.

To make matters worse for the GOP, a fiscal proposal proffered yesterday by House Speaker John Boehner and other Republican congressional leaders is nothing more than food for ridicule. HERE‘s the reaction from the editorial board of The New York Times:

Republicans didn’t even bother to assemble their own package of spending cuts and revenue increases; they did a simple copy and paste of a few proposals made extemporaneously at a hearing last year by Erskine Bowles, the Democratic co-chairman of a deficit reduction committee.

The proposal, which Mr. Bowles quickly disavowed on Monday, purports to raise $800 billion in revenue over a decade by ending deductions and loopholes, while allowing the Bush-era tax cuts for the rich to continue. It would cut $1.2 trillion in spending, half of which would come from Medicare, Medicaid, and other health programs, including an increase in the Medicare eligibility age to 67. Another $600 billion would be cut from other unspecified spending.

Which programs would be cut? The letter doesn’t say, and Republicans don’t seem to care, as long as they blindly achieve their goal of cutting a big chunk out of government. The offer was a transparent attempt to appear responsive to Mr. Obama’s detailed proposal from last week, without doing any actual math or hard work.

If Mr. Boehner had used a calculator, for example, he would have discovered it is impossible to produce $800 billion in revenue from eliminating deductions without severely curtailing the deduction for charitable donations, which is vital to the nonprofit sector. Doing so without limiting the charitable deduction would inevitably raise taxes on the middle class, as nonpartisan analysts have concluded, and would have a much greater effect on the upper middle class than on the very rich.

Take special note, friends, of that part about charitable deductions. If word gets around that Republicans want to curtail the deduction for charitable contributions, the GOP will find itself in even worse trouble.

If you’re wondering why Republican lawmakers don’t just cut their losses and drop their hard-line opposition to Obama’s call for a modestly higher tax rate on the top two-percent of income earners, the answer is simple: Most of them are afraid of getting challenged in primary elections by far-right Tea Party zealots.

Yes, these are tough times for the GOP.




  1. Preserve the generous tax rates for the rich, support the bloated military and their wars, maintain corporate welfare and pay for it by cutting programs for the elderly, disabled and poor. I guess that makes sense.

  2. Brian Opsahl

    Correct me if im wrong but didn’t we just vote on these very same issues and if im not misstaken we did chose the Democrats ideas didn’t we…?

    After watching Boehner CRY about the President ideas…he presented Romneys failed attempt at those same ideas ….and he’s shocked and dissmayed that we are NOT going for it….Really !! YOU LOST the ELECTION ….!!

  3. Brian Osahl – Republicans may have lost the election for the White House, but they retained control over the House of Representatives. The best way to interpret this is that Americans generally prefer Obama’s ideas, but they want him held in check. In other words, no far left extremism like we had the first two years.

    On that note, in a recent poll, even a plurality of Obama voters want the deficit dealt with by making more spending cuts than tax hikes.


    So in other words, the overall majority of Americans want more spending cuts. The Republican plan more closely mirrors the will of the American people than the plan offered by the President.

  4. Neftali says this: “Republicans may have lost the election for the White House, but they retained control over the House of Representatives. The best way to interpret this is that Americans generally prefer Obama’s ideas, but they want him held in check.”

    That is wrong on several counts. First, it imagines that much of the electorate voted split tickets, with most of them choosing Obama for president and Republicans for Congress. Second, it ignores the fact that Democratic candidates for the House got more votes than Republican candidates. The GOP maintained control of the House largely as a result of district boundaries having been gerrymandered by Republican-controlled state legislatures. (Yes, Democrats also gerrymander congressional districts, but they don’t control as many legislatures).

    Then, too, Democrats won most of the votes for U.S. Senate candidates.

    Any time you hear that the American people willfully voted for divided government (as even President Obama has said), you can write if off as nonsense. Most people don’t think that way. They judge the candidates for president and Congress, respectively, on their own merits without thoughts about the balance of power in Washington. Most people understand that they can elect only one of 435 members of the House. To them, balance of power is not part of the equation.

  5. Brian Opsahl

    No it doesn’t …It’s the Romney plan that we all rejected …Sir !! and that is the crap Boehner is peddeling….He still is asking for tax cuts for the rich….hello Mcfly..!! We voted as you know by now for the other plan… you know the one where the top folks pay a little more…the top folks who own 80 % of the wealth …while us low lifes stuggle for nickels…

    Neftali…you hang your hat with the rich..and if you think the ones on welfare are doing so great quite your job and join them since there doing so well being lazy and all….let us all know how good they have it….without your computer of course…!!

  6. Ah. The Speaker of the House of Representatives, who by Constitutional design controls spending prowess, should just be ignored now. Instead we should just listen to whatever the citizens of the most populous states want us to do. We’re no longer the Unites States of America, we’re the “do whatever California and New York dictate of America.” Got it.

  7. I was under the impression that Boehner was asking for tax cuts for everyone.

  8. Luke Fredrickson

    I was under the impression Boehnew was asking to cut medical care for the elderly to pay for tax cuts for everyone like him.

  9. Brian Opsahl

    Neftali, for the last time your ideas LOST !! Boehner had his chance more than a year ago to get a deal done remember that..!! he decieded to take his chances with the election…..and he LOST.

    The President ran on the idea that the rich were going to start paying more and wala that is the very idea we all voted for…and now it’s time to pick your poison either sell out the middle class to protect the rich…or do as the voters requested and raise revenue and make some cuts….as VOTED for.

    When Boehner said right after the election that the law of the land was clear and the heath care bill was now the law of the land. Well that is no differant on the tax issue either.

  10. Two of the three richest people in the entire world are DEMOCRATS, Buffett and Gates- Carlos Slim From Mexico is usually #1 now.. and none of them pay your so called fair share.
    John Kerry registered his multimilion dollar yacht in a different state to avoid an extra $400,000
    tax. Hollywood makes multimillions and dodge taxes..Snipes, Willy Nelson are just a couple Geithner is a tax cheat, Jessie Jackson Jr. a total criminal ( hiding in the nut house to avoid the truth an prosecution ) . Of course Holder won’t prosecute him just like Scumbag John Corzine
    former Gov. of New Jersey ..$1.6 Billion dollars of MF Global disappear.. free and clear to open a new hedge fund. We have to admit the once great USA is now run by the MORON MAJORITY and it’s criminal Marxist Muslim leader puppet of George Soros. Only honest hard working people are expected to pay the freight for the criminal left…we are doomed.

  11. Karl: “Criminal Marxist Muslim leader puppet of George Soros”?

    Wow! You’re in top form today, aren’t you?

    Oh, and you’re evidence that Obama is a criminal Marxist Muslim is…Gee, I guess you didn’t offer any evidence, did you?

    Well, they probably keep you preoccupied there at the home, don’t they? But let us know when you find the evidence to support your interesting theory regarding our president. OK?

    Thanks. And keep in touch.

  12. The Criminal Left

    Karl, you are doomed! Pay my freight!

  13. Brian Opsahl

    Karl says…? Karl marx !!

    Karl I think your having trouble hearing anything, Did you attept to give yourself a Colonoscopy rectul exaime and get stuck or something…?
    Stop watching the Fox lying network of American haters …inc,

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