Shutdown Poll: Huge Majority Want Compromise; Media Fixate On 'Who's To Blame'

CBS News conducted the first poll in the days after the partial government shutdown that began on October 1 and the headlines scream the same message: "GOP To Blame For Unpopular Shutdown"

However, the buried lede in these stories is, of course, one that works in Republicans favor: 75% Of Americans Want a Compromise

According to the CBS News report (in the third to last paragraph):

Most Americans want compromise. Majorities think the President and the Democrats in Congress (76 percent) and the Republicans in Congress (78 percent) should compromise in order to come to an agreement on the budget.

You would think that when three-quarters of both Democrats and Republicans agree that the best solution to the current impasse is a compromise that would be the headline. So why isn't it?

The compromise narrative works in the Republicans' favor.

  • Republicans' first position was to pass a continuing resolution (CR) that defunded Obamacare. That died in the Senate. 
  • The Republicans then sent a CR that funded the government but delayed Obamacare for one year. That died in the Senate. 
  • The GOP then sent a series of bills that funded certain agencies during the partial shutdown. They all died in the Senate.
  • Harry Reid and President Obama's single message during this impasse has been "no negotiation, no compromise." 
  • "I shouldn't have to offer anything," Obama said. "They're not doing me a favor by paying for things that they have already approved for the government to do.

If the Democrats refuse to compromise or even negotiate, and the vast majority of Americans favor a compromise, the the Republicans have the winning hand and narrative right now. 

But, the media continue to fixate on the "who's to blame" narrative instead of "what solution do the American people want?"



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