January 23, 2012

Public Continues to Want President Obama and Republicans to Compromise

58 and 59

A majority (58%) of Americans say GOP leaders should try to work with President Obama to accomplish things, even if it disappoints some Republican supporters. Similarly, 59% say Obama should try to work with GOP leaders, even if it means disappointing Democratic supporters.

Most Americans want President Obama and Republican leaders in Washington to work together to get things done in the coming year. A majority (58%) of people say GOP leaders should try as best they can to work with the President to accomplish things, even if it means disappointing some Republican supporters. Similarly, 59% say Obama should try as best he can to work with GOP leaders to accomplish things, even if it means disappointing Democratic supporters.

But Republicans, particularly those who agree with the Tea Party, are opposed to compromise when it comes to their own political leaders. Most Republicans and Republican-leaning independents continue to say that GOP leaders in Congress should stand up to Obama (55%) rather than work with him to accomplish things (35%). As they were a year ago, Tea Party Republicans are the most likely to reject compromise. Republicans who agree with the Tea Party movement favor standing up to Obama on important issues by a nearly three-to-one margin (67% vs. 21%). By comparison, Republicans who disagree or have no opinion about the Tea Party are divided – 49% say GOP leaders should stand up to Obama while 43% say they should work with him.

Democrats are divided over what they want Obama to do. About as many Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents say Obama should work with Republicans in Congress (48%) as say he should stand up to them on important issues (44%). More moderate and conservative Democrats (53%) than liberal Democrats (41%) want Obama to work with Republicans in Congress. Read More