Today’s political climate, from Tea Party fringes to Occupy Wall Street unrest, should tell you that it’s not about parties anymore.
It’s about issues.
One issue is that the general public is feeling the two major political parties less and less. Does that mean it’s time to pop the champagne bottle for a third party? Doubtful at this point considering how the system is locked up. But, it does say that neither party really has a hold on the American political imagine and neither has any more over the other. Just check out the latest Public Policy Polling survey where 41% of voters believe the GOP-led Congress is worse than the previous Democratic majority; only 37% of voters believe the Republicans are an upgrade. And when you match up a Democrat and a Republican on a Congressional ballot: it’s a tie at 45% for both.
But, neither the Tea Party or #OWS is getting any love these days. Tom Jensen at PPP:
The Occupy Wall Street movement is not wearing well with voters across the country. Only 33% now say that they are supportive of its goals, compared to 45% who say they oppose them. That represents an 11 point shift in the wrong direction for the movement’s support compared to a month ago when 35% of voters said they supported it and 36% were opposed. Most notably independents have gone from supporting Occupy Wall Street’s goals 39/34, to opposing them 34/42.
Voters don’t care for the Tea Party either, with 42% saying they support its goals to 45% opposed. But asked whether they have a higher opinion of the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street movement the Tea Party wins out 43-37, representing a flip from last month when Occupy Wall Street won out 40-37 on that question. Again the movement with independents is notable- from preferring Occupy Wall Street 43-34, to siding with the Tea Party 44-40.
Everyone from Capitol Hill to the White House to cats sitting around the table at the Silver Diner has little faith in the Debt Super Duper Committee’s ability to avoid an across the board trigger cut in domestic and defense spending if they don’t reach a deal. The deadline is right around the corner – and the tension is palpable. Similar to the feeling characters in 2012 and Deep Impact had before disaster struck.
The most recent CNN/Opinion Research survey poll says nearly 80% of Americans think this is dead. After three years of a healthcare fight, tax cut extension deal and near apocalypse on the debt deal, who blames them.
But, question: is this more about their inability to get a debt deal done or is it anger over failure to focus on job creation?
Here’s the President pretty much staying out of it, as Anne E. Kornblut reports in The Washington Post:
Obama has stopped short of issuing a blanket veto threat if the committee tries to undo the severe cuts that would take effect in 2013 if an agreement is not reached. Obama has simply said that Congress “must not shirk its responsibilities” and, in a news conference from Hawaii, said he would not comment on the potential for a veto.
If lawmakers on the committee fail to reach agreement by next week’s deadline, Obama may be forced to step back into the fray after taking a steadfastly hands-off approach to the debt talks over the last few weeks.
Perhaps mindful of the long odds of success, Obama has largely left the negotiations alone, after issuing his blueprint in September for more than $3 trillion in savings. “It would be hard [for Obama] to do more. He’s put a proposal down,” lobbyist Steve Elmendorf said. “People know where he stands.”