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Voters favor government shutdown until parties agree on spending

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As Republicans and Democrats in Congress haggle over spending cuts, most voters would rather have a partial shutdown of the federal government than see spending continue at current levels, a new polls shows.

A Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 58 percent of likely voters say it’s better to have a partial government shutdown until Democrats and Republicans can agree on what spending to cut. Just 33 percent would rather have Congress avoid a government shutdown by authorizing spending at the same levels as last year. 

The partisan differences are striking. Eighty percent of Republicans — and 59 percent of independent voters — think a shutdown is a better option until the two sides can agree on spending cuts, while 58 percent of Democrats prefer avoiding a shutdown by going with current spending levels.

Congress never passed a budget for 2011, but instead passed a temporary spending authority that runs through Friday. Some federal services could be shutdown after the deadline if an agreement to extend the government’s spending power isn’t approved.

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