President Trump again blamed Democrats for the partial government shutdown on Tuesday night, this time in his first primetime national address, saying their’ unwillingness to approve funds for a border wall had left him no choice but to continue to keep the government shuttered.
Look at the polling data, and you can see why Trump (or his advisers) thought a high-profile move like a national address was needed. We’re currently on Day 19 of the shutdown, but Trump’s efforts to pin the blame on Democrats aren’t working according to three pollsters who have conducted at least two polls in the two and a half weeks since the government first closed. Rather, polls show that Americans are increasingly blaming Trump.1
Polls conducted in the first few days of the shutdown showed anywhere from 43 percent to 47 percent of Americans blamed Trump most for the shutdown, while about a third blamed congressional Democrats. Polling data had been pretty scarce thereafter, but this week a handful of new polls gave us an updated view of who Americans think is responsible. (We’re looking only at data from pollsters who have conducted two surveys since the shutdown started — one just after it began and one after the new year. This makes for nice apples-to-apples comparisons.)
More Americans blame Trump for government shutdown
Percentage of respondents who most blame Trump for the partial government shutdown
First Poll Most Recent Poll Pollster End Date Blame Trump End Date Blame Trump Change YouGov Dec. 25 46% Jan. 8 50% +4 Reuters/Ipsos Dec. 25 47 Jan. 7 51 +4 Morning Consult Dec. 23 43 Jan. 6 47 +4