The Wall Street Journal's Peggy Noonan writes on the public's perception of the government shutdown (now on its second week):
If there’s anything this White House knows it’s modern media. But in this case there are signs they have insufficiently absorbed the fact that the old media landscape that prevailed during the last shutdowns, in 1995 and 1996, is gone. Now, as we all know and somehow have to repeatedly relearn, there is a whole new media world that is in effect a counter to the old media landscape—all the news sites and news aggregators, Twitter, etc., not to mention a broader, more culturally significant talk-radio presence, and a major, still-rising cable news network that is not of the liberal-left. The end result of this technology is not necessarily compliant toward or supportive of the Democratic Party. We all know this and have known it for 15 years, and yet it looks to me as if the administration isn’t acting as if it knows it.
Go Google the stories about the World War II Honor Flights and the old men ignoring the shutdown signs and going into the memorial. Google “barrycades,” “Iwo Jima memorial,” “national parks,” “historic site.” Google “Why would we want to do that?” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s answer when asked about restoring funds for children with cancer.
Americans are seeing this stuff, and they know who’s causing it.
The White House thought they’d cause pain with their strategy and the pain would redound on the Republicans. They have caused pain, but it looks to me very likely it will redound on themselves.
A Huffington Post/YouGov poll released Friday showed that the public is pretty evenly divided on placing blame for the shutdown between Democrats and Republicans. The poll showed that 33 percent of Americans blame President Obama and Democrats while 36 percent blame Republicans. Twenty-five percent say both parties are to blame.