A new pair of AFL-CIO polls out from GQRR show support for the protestors and dropping numbers for Gov Scott Walker. Mark Blumenthal covers the issue:
New polling conducted for the AFL-CIO and shared with The Huffington Post shows Wisconsin voters siding with the state workers, unions and protestors by large majorities and expressing net disapproval of Republican Governor Scott Walker.
While Mark covers some of the confounders (partisan poll, union sponsored), he also notes
In this case, however, the ratings of Walker and his budget and collective bargaining proposal are roughly comparable to an automated survey conducted in Wisconsin last week by WeAskAmerica, a for-profit subsidiary of Illinois Manufacturer's Association (an organization that has endorsed Republican candidates for state office in Illinois).
Also of interst is this tracking poll:
A ham-handed "refuse to negotiate" scorched earth Republican approach is, as Ezra notes , on display both in WI and DC (no coincidence, there.)
Republicans and Democrats, it seems, govern rather differently. Republicans are proving themselves willing to do what liberals long wanted the Obama administration to do: Play hardball. Refuse compromise. Risk severe consequences that they'll attempt to blame on their opponent. The Obama administration's answer to this was always that it was important to be seen as the reasonable actor in the drama, to occupy some space known as the middle, and to avoid, so much as possible, the appearance of dramatic overreach. This is as close as we're likely to come to a test of that theory. In two cases, Republicans have chosen a hardline and are refusing significant compromise, even at the risk of terrible consequences. Will the public turn on them for overreach? Applaud their strength and conviction? Or not really care one way or the other, at least by the time the next election rolls around?
We may find out well before the next election. According to this poll, the answer is "overreach".