A majority of Americans would prefer that political leaders in Washington, D.C. compromise to get things done instead of ardently staking out a position and sticking with it, according to a new Gallup poll.
Just as Congress narrowly avoided yet another looming government shutdown for the second time this year, 51 percent of respondents said that politicians should compromise rather than to stick to their beliefs, up from 47 percent in November 2010. Only 28 percent of respondents said that politicians sticking to their beliefs was more important.
Conservatives and Republicans were deeply divided over the issue, but were slightly more likely to agree with the sentiment that “it is more important for political leaders to stick to their beliefs even if little gets done,” with 40 percent and 37 percent agreeing, respectively. Thirty-six percent of both conservatives and Republicans preferred compromise.
Liberals and Democrats, on the other hand, were much more likely to favor compromise, with just over 60 percent of both groups favoring compromise and about 20 percent opposing it.
Tea Party supporters were the most fervently opposed to compromise of any of the groups examined by Gallup. Forty-five percent of tea party supporters said that it is more important for political groups to stick to their beliefs, even if little gets done, while 31 percent responded in favor compromise.
Self-identified tea party opponents were the strongest supporters of compromise, with 69 percent of respondents agreeing with the sentiment that “it is more important for political leaders to compromise in order to get things done.”
The Gallup poll was conducted Sept. 8-11. It surveyed 1,017 adults, and included a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
The Gazette now offers Facebook Comments on its stories. You must be logged into your Facebook account to add comments. If you do not want your comment to post to your personal page, uncheck the box below the comment. Comments deemed offensive by the moderators will be removed, and commenters who persist may be banned from commenting on the site.