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Who's Likely To Lose The Shutdown 'Blame Game'?

With the seeming certainty of a federal shutdown at the stroke of midnight, there's been some polling in the past week or so aimed at divining the political fallout.

Who will be blamed?

Will it be House Republicans, with their unyielding efforts to defund and delay Obamacare, or Democrats (and President Obama) who will be viewed as unwilling to compromise?

Here's a short guide to some recent polling:

-- A survey published last week by the folks at the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press asked: "Who is more to blame if agreement is not reached?" The results: Republicans, 39 percent; Obama administration, 36 percent; both, 17 percent.

-- A CNN/ORC International poll conducted over the weekend asked much the same question and got a less favorable result for the GOP. Some 46 percent said a shutdown would be the fault of Republicans, while 36 percent said the president would be more responsible. Thirteen percent said both sides would be to blame.

-- Asked by Gallup last week whether it was more important for political leaders in Washington to stick to beliefs or compromise, Americans overwhelmingly chose "compromise" — by a margin of 53 percent to 25 percent. Since Republicans, Democrats and the president all claim to be sticking to their principles, it's not entirely clear what's to be made of the result.

Lastly, another poll published last week by Gallup could offer some additional clues. It asked whether respondents considered themselves "a supporter of the Tea Party movement, an opponent of the Tea Party movement, or neither." Supporters were at 22 percent (down 10 percentage points from three years ago), while 27 percent said they opposed the movement. Just as telling, perhaps, was that 51 percent responded that they are neither a supporter nor an opponent.

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