President Barack Obama is winning the battle for public opinion in the negotiations to raise the debt ceiling, with the overwhelming majority disapproving of the way Republicans are handling it - even most GOP voters, according to a new poll on Monday.
Seventy-one percent of Americans surveyed for a CBS News poll released Monday morning say they oppose how Republicans are handling negotiations, while just 21 percent approve. In contrast, 48 percent disapprove of the president’s role in the talks, while 43 percent approve.
Congressional Democrats don’t do quite as well as Obama, but are still polling better than their GOP colleagues, with 48 percent of those surveyed saying they disapprove of the Democrats’ handling of the talks, while 31 percent approve.
Even among Republicans surveyed, the party led by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) in the House isn’t faring all that well, with 51 percent saying they disapprove of how the party is handling the negotiations. Meanwhile, 32 percent of Democrats say they disapprove of how congressional Democrats are handling the talks, while 22 percent disapprove of the president’s handling.
Americans are closely divided, though, over whether the negotiations are necessary. Forty percent of those surveyed say they think the Obama administration’s warnings about the dangers of defaulting on government debt are valid, while 36 percent say the administration is trying to scare Americans.
Nonetheless, 66 percent say they think a deal will be reached before the formal August 2 deadline set by the Treasury Department, while 31 percent say a deal seems unlikely.
The poll was conducted July 15-17 and surveyed 810 adults. The error margin is plus or minus for percentage points.
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