Several prominent Democrats and their media friends have charged the Tea Party with being economic terrorists during the congressional budget debates, but most voters don’t see it that way.
Fifty-five percent (55%) of Likely U.S. Voters, in fact, say members of the Tea Party are not economic terrorists. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 29% believe Tea Party members have been terrorists during the budget debates, while another 16% are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Perhaps tellingly, while 53% of Democrats view Tea Party members as terrorists, 57% of voters not affiliated with either major party disagree, as do 74% of Republicans.
Still, a plurality (43%) of all voters think the Tea Party has made things worse of the country in the budget debates in Congress. Thirty-two percent (32%) say the Tea Party has made things better for America, and 14% say it’s had no impact. Eleven percent (11%) are undecided.
Again, there’s a noticeable partisan divide: 53% of Republicans believe the Tea Party has made things better, while 73% of Democrats feel it has made things worse. Unaffiliated voters are evenly divided with 37% saying the Tea Party made things better and 37% worse.
Just 34% of all voters in separate polling favored tax hikes as part of the deal to raise the debt ceiling. Fifty-five percent (55%) opposed including tax increases of any kind in the deal.
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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on August 5-6, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
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