Poll: Americans see Republicans as ‘Troublemakers’

A new poll paints a not-so-flattering picture of Republicans, with a plurality of Americans of the opinion the GOP’s main goal is causing trouble for President Obama.

The National Journal poll finds 32% of Americans think the GOP’s top priority is causing political problems for the president, while 20% say it’s reducing government debt. The same poll finds 24% think the top priority for Democrats is reducing healthcare costs, while 19% say it’s causing political problems for Republicans in Congress.

One finding that might cause problems for both parties was how few respondents, of any partisan or demographic slice, saw either’s principal focus as creating jobs–even with unemployment stubbornly hovering over 7 percent. Not many Democrats (roughly one-fifth) or Republicans (about one-sixth) viewed that as their own party’s top priority.

Even core constituencies on each side didn’t see much emphasis placed on that enduring problem. Only about one in nine young adults younger than 30, and just under one in five minorities, saw job creation as the Democrats’ top priority. Similarly, job creation was named as the GOP’s top priority by only about one in seven whites without a college education, and one in nine white seniors. The confrontations looming this month over funding the federal government and raising the public debt is only likely to deepen the sense that Washington’s priorities lie elsewhere.