Just 17 percent said they were following the protests “very closely”. Independents — at 19 percent — were keeping the closest eye on the “Occupy” efforts while just 12 percent of Republicans did the same.
Both businessman Herman Cain and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich critiqued the “Occupy Wall Street” protests during Tuesday night’s debate in New Hampshire; Gingrich said that a portion of the protesters were “left-wing agitators who would be happy to show up next week on any other topic”. (He also noted that a portion were “sincere middle class people”.)
Of course, defenders of the relevance of the “OWS” protests will, rightly, note that it remains very much in its infant stages and that many big things in politics once started off quite small.
True enough. And with President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden both mentioning the protests in high-profile forums last week, it’s possible that in a few weeks time these numbers could look very different.
But, today they don’t. And that fact will embolden conservatives.
So in other words, a poll showing a surprisingly uniform (if not all that high yet) amount of interest in the protests across parties will embolden conservatives to Newt Gingrich to continue to describe the protests fairly accurately: as a mix of people who go to a lot of protests (I wouldn’t use the word “agitators” obviously) and middle-class people who don’t usually go to protests.
Also too, it’s simply ridiculous to discuss the comparison with the teahadists without mentioning the fact that Fox News practically invented the tea party. It’s hard for people not to know about something when it’s on the tube 24/7. Let’s compare this to the percentage of NFL fans who are forced to follow that Whitney show, while we’re at it.
Back to the interest among independents…John tells me “Every time someone mentions independents I want to kick a puppy”. But I see it differently here: Democrats have not done enough for the working class. Yeah, that’s partly because Republicans have impeded their efforts. But if you’re not a particularly political person and you hear Democrats wanking about debt reduction and cutting your Social Security at time when you’re out of job, I can see why you might think neither party gives a fuck about you while at the same time being interested in movement that does give a fuck about you.
Poll after poll shows that there’s plenty of real Applebee’s-going Americans who hate the banksters. If the Occupy Together movement truly takes off, it will be in large part because of unions. If there’s a hard-hat riot this time, it won’t be the protesters the hard-hats attack.