Tea Party Edges Out Occupy Wall Street for Public Favor

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The Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street -- fairly or unfairly pegged as the yin and yang of American political discourse -- have flip-flopped in the polls. A month ago, polls were showing twice as much support for the anti-inequality protesters in Zuccotti Park, but a poll out Wednesday from Public Policy Polling finds that the Tea Party now edges out the Occupiers in public affection.   

[A]sked whether they have a higher opinion of the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street movement the Tea Party wins out 43-37, representing a flip from last month when Occupy Wall Street won out 40-37 on that question. Again the movement with independents is notable- from preferring Occupy Wall Street 43-34, to siding with the Tea Party 44-40.

What accounted for the shift? PPP's Tom Jensen says it doesn't reflect Americans not being concerned about income inequality (just look at how much more the U.S. is interested in the issue recently). So, it's anyone's guess. But the sustained confrontations in Oakland (which some compared more to a riot than a protest), and the New York Post-spurred daily reports of Zuccotti Park  mischief couldn't have helped. However, the PPP survey showing "fading" favor toward OWS was conducted on November 10-13th, before the NYPD served an eviction notice on Zuccotti Park.  

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.