Republicans Are Fed Up With Republicans

Twenty-seven percent of Republicans don’t like their own party right now.

Reporters and photographers question Speaker of the House John Boehner.
National Journal
Brian Resnick
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Brian Resnick
Oct. 9, 2013, 11:42 a.m.

Fa­vor­ab­il­ity rat­ings for Re­pub­lic­ans are at his­tor­ic lows.

Ac­cord­ing to the latest from Gal­lup, 62 per­cent of Amer­ic­ans now view the Grand Old Party un­fa­vor­ably, with the num­bers rising sharply in re­cent weeks. Dis­like of Demo­crats has in­creased as well, but by a tiny de­gree in com­par­is­on.

Re­pub­lic­ans haven’t been this des­pised since the end of 2008, right be­fore Demo­crats rushed in­to the House and Sen­ate in a wave.

But per­haps more in­ter­est­ing is Gal­lup’s in­spec­tion of how Re­pub­lic­ans feel about their own party. The head­lines about Re­pub­lic­ans lately re­flect a fis­sure in the party, and polls may have tapped in­to that. The Gal­lup poll finds that Re­pub­lic­ans are twice as likely to view their own party un­fa­vor­ably than Demo­crats. Twenty-sev­en per­cent of Re­pub­lic­ans don’t like their own party right now, and that’s rising at a great­er rate when com­pared to self-hat­ing Demo­crats.

“The GOP’s un­fa­vor­able rat­ing among Re­pub­lic­ans is up 8 points from Septem­ber, com­pared with a 1-point rise in Demo­crat­ic Party un­fa­vor­ables among Demo­crats,” Gal­lup re­por­ted. The poll was con­duc­ted between Oct. 3 and Oct. 6 among a ran­dom sample of 1,028 and has a mar­gin of er­ror of plus or minus 4 per­cent­age points.

Re­pub­lic­an dis­pleas­ure with Re­pub­lic­ans was bub­bling up be­fore the gov­ern­ment shut­down. A week be­fore the shut­down, 51 per­cent of Re­pub­lic­an re­spond­ents in a United Tech­no­lo­gies/Na­tion­al Journ­al Con­gres­sion­al Con­nec­tion Poll said Con­gress should con­tin­ue fund­ing the gov­ern­ment and deal with Obama­care af­ter­ward. Their lead­ers did the op­pos­ite, in­sist­ing that the con­tinu­ing res­ol­u­tion be tied to changes in the Af­ford­able Care Act.

But as has been re­por­ted, na­tion­al polls might not be so im­port­ant for the polit­ic­al fu­ture of cer­tain Re­pub­lic­an le­gis­lat­ors in deep-red ger­ry­mandered dis­tricts. They have to worry about win­ning primar­ies against con­ser­vat­ive op­pon­ents, not ad­just­ing to a na­tion­al sen­ti­ment. In fact, they may have good reas­on to dig their heels in and con­front Obama­care and the Demo­crats un­yield­ingly.

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THE DETAILS

Hillary Clinton hopes that television ratings for the candidates' acceptance speeches at their respective conventions aren't foreshadowing of similar results at the polls in November. Preliminary results from the networks and cable channels show that 34.9 million people tuned in for Donald Trump's acceptance speech while 33.3 million watched Clinton accept the Democratic nomination. However, it is still possible that the numbers are closer than these ratings suggest: the numbers don't include ratings from PBS or CSPAN, which tend to attract more Democratic viewers.

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