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53 percent of Americans blame GOP for government shutdown -- poll

Protesters attend a rally on the D.C. budget and to end the government shutdown near the U.S. Capitol Building on October 9, 2013 in Washington, D.C. The government shutdown has entered its ninth day as the congress remains deadlocked over the budget. UPI/Kevin Dietsch
Protesters attend a rally on the D.C. budget and to end the government shutdown near the U.S. Capitol Building on October 9, 2013 in Washington, D.C. The government shutdown has entered its ninth day as the congress remains deadlocked over the budget. UPI/Kevin Dietsch | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Oct. 10 (UPI) -- A majority of Americans blame Republicans for the government shutdown and would vote to replace every member of Congress if they could, a poll showed Thursday.

An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll indicated 53 percent of Americans blame the GOP for the shutdown, while 35 percent blame President Barack Obama.

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The president's approval rating was 47 percent, up two points from the most recent NBC/WSJ poll, while voter approval of the Democratic Party was 39 percent, down 3 points from the last poll. Twenty-four percent said they have a favorable opinion of the GOP, and 21 percent view the Tea Party favorably -- all-time lows for both in the poll.

Voters said they prefer Democrats over Republicans to control Congress, 47-39, but 60 percent said they would expel the entire Congress, including their own representative -- a record high for the question since the poll began -- while 35 percent said they would not vote out all members.

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"We continue to use this number as a way to sort of understand how much revulsion there is," said Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart, who conducted the poll with Republican Bill McInturff. "We now have a new high-water mark."

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The Affordable Care Act got a favorable rating of 38 percent, up from 31 percent in the previous survey.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has warned the global economy could collapse if the United States defaults on its debt for the first time in history, a prospect some House Republicans could make happen if they don't agree to raise the debt ceiling and allow the government to pay its bills.

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The poll, conduct Oct. 7-9, involved 800 interviews and has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.

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