The newest New York Times/CBS poll is a disaster for Republicans and the Tea Party and a virtual broadside against Congress as a whole. The 80% of Americans who disapprove of Congress is the highest number since the poll began in 1977. Given the acrimony of the past month, these figures are especially significant:
More than four out of five people surveyed said that the recent debt-ceiling debate was more about gaining political advantage than about doing what is best for the country. Nearly three-quarters said that the debate had harmed the image of the United States in the world.
All told, 72 percent disapproved of the way Republicans in Congress handled the negotiations, while 66 percent disapproved of the way Democrats in Congress handled negotiations.
Respondents split evenly on President Obama’s handling of the debt ceiling debate, 47% disapproving and 46% approving. Tea Party unfavorables jumped from 29% to 40% in a month. Only 20% of Americans view the Tea Party favorably.
The poll notes Republican calls for deficit reduction are resonating, yet by 2 to 1 Americans think fixing unemployment is more important.
44 percent of those polled said the cuts in the debt-ceiling agreement did not go far enough, 29 percent said they were about right and only 15 percent said they went too far. More than a quarter of the Democrats polled said that the cuts in the agreement did not go far enough.
63% of Americans agree with President Obama on “raising taxes” for those making over $250,000/year.