US public opinion has ‘no’ effect on govt

US public opinion has no influence on the US government’s behavior, says Glen Ford, executive editor at Black Agenda Report, adding that the current stalemate over the government shutdown and the debt ceiling in Washington just helps President Barack Obama to reposition himself as a Democrat.

Obama and congressional leaders have not yet agreed over a deal for raising the country’s current $16.7 trillion debt limit, whose deadline is October 17. Failure to raise the nation’s borrowing limit will trigger the first default on US debt in history. 

Meanwhile, the US government has shut down much of its function since October 1 as Democrats and Republicans have failed to agree on a budget to keep funding government operations. 

A major bone of contention has been Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, which Republicans have been seeking to defund or delay. 

Poll after poll has recently shown that Americans’ approval rating for the US government is declining. 

“Large majorities of Americans are in favor of measures that are antithetical as much to the Democrats as they are to Republicans. So, American public opinion has not had much of an influence on the actual behavior of the US government in a very long time,” said Ford in a phone interview with Press TV on Monday. 

He also said the current political impasse in Washington has just given Obama a chance to reposition himself as a Democrat as his “political base has been quite shaky.” 

“On the Democratic side, this is the best thing that could happen to Obama and he and the Democrats are milking it for all it is worth,” he added. 



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