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Poll: Sequester

Poll: Sequester

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Published by CBS_News

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Published by: CBS_News on Mar 04, 2013
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CBS News PollFor release: Monday, March 4, 20136:30 PM ETSpending Cuts and Sequester 
March 1-3, 2013Congress and President Barack Obama continue to remain at odds on how best to reduce thefederal deficit -- causing the automatic spending cuts referred to as “sequester” to start takingeffect on March 1. A CBS News Poll conducted as the sequester cuts were about to beginfinds:
53% say they personally will be affected by the cuts in the sequester. More (46%) saythose cuts will be bad for the country overall than say they will be good (34%).
Most Americans (56%) want to cut spending and raise taxes to reduce the deficit. But63% would prefer to see cuts planned without the automatic sequester. On this, parti-sans agree.
38% of Americans place more blame on the Republicans in Congress, while 33% blamePresident Obama and the Democrats in Congress more for the difficulty in reachingagreement on spending cuts by the deadline.
But both sides are urged to compromise. 73% want the Republicans in Congress to doso, and 78% say the same for the Democrats and the President.
Impact and Blame
Many Americans expect the budget cuts in the sequester to have a negative impact on thecountry overall. 46% expect the cuts will be bad for the country, because it forces cuts to impor-tant programs and services, while 34% expect them to be good for the country, because itforces the government to cut spending.There are differences by party. 46% of Republicans expect the sequester to have a positive ef-fect on the country, while 60% of Democrats think the impact will be negative.
Impact of Sequester on Country
 AllRepsDemsIndsGood for country34%46%23%35%Bad for country46326043No impact12161011 And more than half, 53%, foresee their own lives being affected.
Will Sequester Cuts Affect You?
Women (57%) are more likely than men (50%) to expect to be affected by the cuts in the se-quester. Those with lower incomes are also more apt to think they will be impacted.There is plenty of blame to go around for the inability to reach agreement on deficit reduction bythe March 1 deadline. 38% of Americans place more blame on the Republicans in Congress for the failure, while 33% blame President Obama and the Democrats in Congress more. 19% vol-unteer that they blame both sides.For the most part, America's partisans point their fingers at the other party. 69% of Republicansblame the President and Democrats in Congress, while 72% of Democrats blame the Republi-cans in Congress.
Blame More for Failure to Reach Agreement by March 1
 AllRepsDemsIndsRepublicans in Congress38% 6%72%33%Obama/Democrats in Congress3369 631Both19171424
Cutting the Deficit
Generally, a majority of Americans prefers to reduce the deficit by both raising taxes and cuttingfederal spending, a finding similar to last month's. A third thinks that spending cuts alone, asRepublican leaders in Congress propose, is the best way to do that.Partisanship colors views on this question. Among most Republicans, spending cuts alone arethe preferred method to reduce the deficit (55%). Most Democrats (74%) and independents(55%) prefer a combination of tax increases and spending cuts.
Best Method of Deficit Reduction
 AllRepsDemsIndsOnly cut federal spending35%55%16%36%Only raise taxes 5 2 7 5Combination of spending cuts and taxes56367455When considering spending cuts, 63% of Americans - including majorities of Republicans,Democrats, and independents alike - say that those cuts should be made without use of the se-quester. 18% want them made through the sequester, and 13% want no cuts at all.Most Democrats and Republicans want cuts made without the sequester. Still, more than aquarter of Republicans support cuts made via the sequester.
Views on Spending Cuts
 AllRepsDemsIndsShould cut spending with sequester18%27% 8%19%Should cut spending without sequester63626563Should not cut spending13 42312 As was the case during the battle over raising the debt ceiling in January, there is broad publicsupport for compromise. 78% want the President and Democrats in Congress to compromise
their positions and come to an agreement, and 73% want the Republicans in Congress to do thesame. Few want either side to stick to their positions, even if it means not coming to an agree-ment.
Compromise over Tax Increases and Spending Cuts?
Pres.Obama and Dems shouldCong. Reps shouldCompromise78%73%Stick to positions1521
Following the Sequester 
More than seven in ten Americans are following the news about the automatic spending cuts, in-cluding 28% who are following it very closely.
Following News about Sequester?
Very closely28%Somewhat closely43Not too closely28 __________________________________________________________________________ 
This poll was conducted by telephone from March 1-3, 2013 among 861 adults nationwide. Phone numbers were di-aled from samples of both standard land-line and cell phones. The error due to sampling for results based on the en-tire sample could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups may be higher. This poll releaseconforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

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