It's a a good thing that Congressional Democrats and Republicans late Monday reached a stop-gap funding agreement averting a U.S. Government shutdown, as American voter attitudes toward public policy have worsened.

Regarding the partisan feud that nearly resulted in a U.S. Government default in August and a government shutdown in the spring, most voters want each party to compromise to help solve the nation's problems, according to the latest USA Today/Gallup Poll on the subject.

In all, 72 percent of Americans say it's more important for the parties to compromise or remain neutral, than stick to beliefs; 51 percent said it was more important to compromise.

Among Democrats, 79 percent said it's more important for the parties to compromise or remain neutral, than stick to beliefs; 62 percent said it was more important to compromise.

Among Republicans, 63 percent it's more important for the parties to compromise or remain neutral, than stick to beliefs; however, only 36 percent said it was more important to compromise.

Among Independents, 72 percent said it's more important for the parties to compromise or remain neutral, than stick to beliefs; 52 percent said it was more important to compromise.

Tea Party Voters: Least Likely to Support Compromise

What's more, the Tea Party faction of the Republican Party, a very conservative political faction, was the segment of the political/ideological spectrum that's least likely to favor compromise. In all, 53 percent of Tea Party members said it's more important for the parties to compromise or remain neutral, than stick to beliefs; however, only 31 percent support compromise exclusively. Also, 45 percent said it was more important for the Tea Party's public officials to stick to beliefs.

In addition, by ideology, only 36 percent of conservatives said it was important to compromise, whereas a majority of moderates, 52 percent, and liberals, 62 percent, said it was important to compromise.

The USA today/Gallup Poll of 1,004 adults aged 18 and up was conducted Sept. 15 thru 18 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Voting Behavior Analysis: Previous polls have shown that the seemingly continual partisan wrangling and brinkmanship have taken a toll on voter attitudes toward Congress and that deterioration is further confirmed by the public's current view on the public policy process. Most voters, except Tea Party faction members, want the parties to find common ground and compromise in order to address the economic and social problems facing the nation.

Further, historically, when voters disapprove of the way Congress is handling its job, that's been a bad sign for incumbents. In this case, the representation impact will be split -- if voters decide to throw the rascals out because Republicans control the House; Democrats, the Senate. Also, readers should keep in mind that the 2012 election is roughly 14 months away -- a very long time in political terms -- and new issues can emerge to change the American electorate's preferences.