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Poll: more Americans blame Republicans for the shutdown mess rather than Democrats

As the deadline approaches, 48 percent point the finger at Trump and the GOP for a potential shutdown.

President Trump Visits Equipment Manufacturing Plant In Pennsylvania Jeff Swensen/Getty Images
Jen Kirby is a senior foreign and national security reporter at Vox, where she covers global instability.

More Americans are blaming Donald Trump and Republicans for pushing the government toward a shutdown, according to a new Washington Post/ABC News poll.

A total of 48 percent of respondents pointed the finger at the president and his party for the stalemate over immigration and border security that’s prevented Congress from reaching a deal to keep the government open.

Broken down across party lines, 78 percent of Democrats overwhelmingly are laying the blame on the GOP and Trump. Only 14 percent of Republicans see their party as the one at fault, and 46 of independents are also accusing the party in power for screwing this up.

Notably, Republicans are slightly more willing to blame their own party — 14 percent — than Democrats, only 8 percent of whom say their team is at fault.

And speaking of Democrats, they’re not totally off the hook: 28 percent blame them, including 66 percent of Republicans and 25 percent of independents.

Eighteen percent of respondents say both parties are to blame.

The Washington Post/ABC News poll surveyed 1,005 adults between January 15 and 18, before the House passed a short-term continuing resolution Thursday night to keep the government open through February 16. (The Senate hasn’t reached a deal, and a shutdown is likely if senators do not.) The House deal would extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program for six years, and delay some Obamacare taxes.

That deal doesn’t include any agreement on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or immigration or border security. This is the sticking point for Democrats, who say they will vote against anything that doesn’t include protections for the unauthorized immigrants who could stay and work in the US through the DACA program.

Right now, both parties are playing the shutdown blame game, which Vox’s Dylan Scott boils down:

Democrats say that Republicans control both chambers of Congress and the White House — of course it’s their fault if they can’t keep the government open. Republicans, meanwhile, are accusing Democrats of withholding their needed votes in the Senate in order to press for a resolution to the impasse in the immigration debate, even at the expense of the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

There’s a lot of back-and-forth over who will eventually get blamed if the government does shut down and the National Zoo’s panda cam gets turned off. The government shut down for more than two weeks in October 2013, in part due to a GOP attempt to delay the rollout of Obamacare. (It didn’t work.) Republicans largely got the blame — though it didn’t matter all that much in the 2014 midterms.

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