More voters would blame Republicans than Obama in absence of debt limit deal, says poll

President Barack Obama sits with House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, Monday, July 11, 2011, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. AP Photo

President Barack Obama sits with House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, Monday, July 11, 2011, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington.
AP Photo/Charles Dharapak
If Congress is unable to come to a deal to increase America's debt ceiling, more Americans will blame Republicans than will blame President Obama, says a new poll by Quinnipiac University.

According to the survey, released on Thursday, 48 percent of Americans say they will blame Republicans, not President Obama, if the country's $14.3 debt limit is not raised. Thirty-four percent said they would blame Mr. Obama rather than the GOP.

The poll comes on the heels of a tense round of negotiations over a deal to raise the U.S. debt ceiling, varying accounts of which describe everything from an abrupt walk-out by Mr. Obama, to "childish" behavior by leading Republican Eric Cantor.

The survey indicates, however, that as much as Americans disapprove of Mr. Obama's economic leadership, they trust him more than they trust Republicans on the issue: 56 percent of respondents said they disapproved of how the president is dealing with the economy, but 45 percent said they trusted him more than they trusted Republicans to deal with it.

Voters also indicated support for the inclusion of revenue increases in the debt limit deal - an issue which has been a major priority for Democrats, and a primary sticking point among Republicans.

According to the poll, 67 percent of voters wanted any agreement to include tax increases for wealthy Americans and corporations in addition to spending cuts - and 45 percent saw the president's proposals to raise revenues as "closing loopholes," rather than "tax hikes."

Still, the poll says, 57 percent of voters think that those proposals will affect the middle-class in addition to the wealthy.

"The American people aren't very happy about their leaders, but President Barack Obama is viewed as the best of the worst, especially when it comes to the economy," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

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