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Pew/WaPo poll: GOP losing blame game on fiscal cliff

Posted Dec 4, 2012 by William March

Updated Dec 4, 2012 at 03:59 PM

A poll by the Washington Post and the Pew Research Center indicates the public will blame congressional Republicans more than President Barack Obama if the country goes over the “fiscal cliff.”

Asked who would be more to blame if the two sides fail to resolve the nation’s budget dilemma, 53 percent of the respondents said the GOP would and should bear most of the blame; 27 percent said Obama deserved more of the blame; and 12 percent said the two both sides would be equally to blame.

The “fiscal cliff” is a set of tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect automatically Jan. 1 unless Congress passes a deficit-cutting plan, but Obama and congressional Democrats have been unable to reach an agreement with Republicans who control the U.S. House.

The numbers are roughly unchanged from a similar poll three weeks ago.

Asked about the effects of going over the cliff, 64 percent said it would have a “major effect” on the nation’s economy, while 27 percent said a minor effect or no effect.

The poll sampled 1,003 adults by conventional and cell phones Nov. 29-Dec. 2, for an error margin of 3.5 percentage points. More detailed results here.