Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, is taking the heat back home after standing with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, to shut down the government for 16 days, which cost the economy $24 billion and trimmed about 120,000 private sector jobs.
Utah has been represented by more business-minded Republicans in the past, who would have done anything to keep the machine at work and avoid a shutdown, according to the Washington Post.
The Tea Party favorite threw his hat into the ring with Cruz, and now his approval rating is plummeting in Utah.
Lee’s approval rating is a historic low for a sitting GOP federal officeholder in Utah, according to a KSL-TV poll conducted by Dan Jones & Associates.
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According to a poll conducted by a group of political science professors at Brigham Young University, 57 percent of Utah voters think Lee should “more willing to compromise,” while 43 percent prefer that he “stand by his principles.”
President A. Scott Anderson of Utah’s Zions Bank says shutting the government down is just plain bad for business. Prominent business executive and GOP leaders are talking about challenging Lee in the next primary, according to the Post.
“I think people admire him for sticking to his guns and principles, but I think there are growing frustrations,” Anderson said. “If things are to happen, you can’t just stick to your principles. You have to make things work. You’ve got to be practical.”
Spencer Zwick, former aide to Gov. Mitt Romney, R-Mass, during his presidential campaign, told the Post that Lee is just a “show horse” who wants to “be a spectacle.”
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“Business leaders that I talk to, many of whom supported him,” Zwick said, “would never support his reelection and in fact will work against him, myself included.”
“Lee looks vulnerable to a challenge from within his party, but the real danger could be a challenge in a general election from the right kind of moderate Democrat,” Brigham Young University pollster Quin Monson told the Wall Street Journal.