PPP's newest national survey finds that in the wake of the shutdown, Republican voters now view Ted Cruz as their party's leader. 21% picked Cruz to 17% for Chris Christie, and 15% for John Boehner. Cruz finished well ahead of the other GOP Senators we tested- Rand Paul got 9%, John McCain 7%, and Mitch McConnell only 4%. Mitt Romney at 8% and Sarah Palin at 4% were the other people we tested.
Numbers PPP will release next week show Ted Cruz would be an exceedingly weak Presidential candidate in the general election. The good news for the GOP is that even if the party base sees Cruz as their leader Democrats and independents actually see Chris Christie, who has far broader approval, as the leader of the Republican Party these days. With Democrats Christie gets 23% to 17% for Boehner and only 10% for Cruz. And with independents Christie gets 25% to 17% for Cruz and 10% for Boehner. Even if Republicans themselves see Cruz as their leader, they're better off with everyone else seeing it as Christie.
Democrats continue to lead Republicans on the generic Congressional ballot, 44/38. They have a slight advantage with independents (33/29) and Democrats (83%) are also more committed to supporting their own party next year than Republicans (78%) are. These numbers are pretty similar to the 5 point generic leads we found for Democrats nationally in late September and early October.
Overall Congressional approval is down to 6%, with 87% of voters disapproving. But voters are more closely divided in their feelings about their own member of Congress, with 41% approving to 45% who disapprove. Independents (31/59) are particularly unhappy with their own representatives, but Democrats (48/37) actually like them and Republicans (41/41) are split in their feelings.
Congress isn't doing well, but President Obama isn't doing too well either. Only 46% of voters approve of the job he's doing to 50% who disapprove, and with independents he's at a 41/56 spread. Only 40% of voters nationally approve of Obamacare to 49% who disapprove, including 37/55 with independents.
Finally there are 2 big football rivalry games being played tomorrow and although there's no way for polling to tell us who's going to win, it can tell us which Americans will see as the more prestigious institution regardless of what happens on the gridiron tomorrow. By an 84/16 margin North Carolina beats out North Carolina State on that measure, and Michigan beats Michigan State 77/23 on the same question #GoHeels #GoBlue
Full results here