Debt-Deal Poll: Obama Sold Out, Pay Cut for Congress, Time for Third Party

A new poll of Daily Beast readers revealed low regard for Obama and Congress, and desire for a third party.

As the final hours of the debt debate passed and the bill passed the president’s desk, we polled our readers to see what you really think of the deal, the president, and our elected representatives who saw it through.

Our findings reveal that just 26 percent of you think President Obama is a good negotiator. Yet 74 percent think he'll be reelected—despite a whopping 82 percent who say he's doing worse than they had expected.

There is discontent with Congress—toward members of both parties—leaving many dreaming of a system with more than two parties. Lawmakers should pay more for health insurance, they should take a pay cut to help cut the deficit (albeit symbolically), and some say we should ask our representatives to abstain from signing arm-twisting policy pledges.

Here is a snapshot of the results.

On the president and the Democrats:

  • 62 percent say Barack Obama sold out the left, and just 26 percent say he's a good negotiator.
  • 74 percent of respondents still believe Obama will be reelected.
  • 70 percent say they would support a progressive third-party candidate.
  • 82 percent say Obama has been a worse president than they expected.
  • 69 percent say Obama should have invoked the 14th Amendment.

On Republicans and the GOP:

  • 89 percent say the Republicans used the debt ceiling as blackmail, and 72 percent say the debt bill is a victory for the GOP.
  • Just 24 percent say John Boehner displayed leadership during the debate.
  • 90 percent say that had the Tea Party caucus had its way, the GOP would have allowed the U.S. to default.
  • Only 18 percent say a Tea Party–backed candidate has a shot at the White House in 2012, and 81 percent say they expect a Tea Party backlash on the horizon.
  • A whopping 78 percent say we should require our elected representatives to abstain from signing pledges—such as the antitax pledge that bound the hands of many GOP lawmakers.

On Congress:

  • 85 percent say Congress members should pay more money for their health insurance.
  • 83 percent say Congress should take a pay cut to help bring down the deficit.
  • 76 percent say it's time for an alternative to Republicans and Democrats.
  • Just 20 percent say Congress should be prevented from raising the debt ceiling.
  • 61 percent say the deficit panel would work better if the leaders were forced to pick one or two members of the opposing party, instead of three of their own.

View the full results on, whose designer is responsible for the above infographic of our poll’s results.