In a recent public opinion survey of 1,000 like American voters, 42 percent said they identify with Obama politically and 42 percent said they identify with the Tea Party; 16 percent said they weren’t sure who they identified with.

The latest findings mark a small setback for the Tea Party from April 2010, when 48 percent felt closest to the average Tea Party member, while 44 percent said they had more in common with the president

34 percent now believe their personal views are closest to those of the average member of Congress when it comes to the major issues of the day, while 36 percent say their views are closest to those of the average member of the Tea Party and a sizable 30 percent are not sure.

Opposition by Tea Party Republicans to the president’s national health care law has been blamed for the recent government shutdown, and just 30 percent of voters now have a favorable opinion of the Tea Party — back to the level seen in January and down from a high of 44 percent in May after it was disclosed that the Internal Revenue Service was targeting Tea Party and other conservative groups.

50 percent regard the small government grass roots movement unfavorably, while 19 percent are undecided.

32 percent feel the Tea Party has become more influential over the past year, up from 25 percent in late August before the shutdown began, while 28 percent say the Tea Party is less influential now and 33 percent say their influence is about the same.

One-in-three voters (34 percent) considers the Tea Party movement good for the county, but 43 percent describe it as bad for America and 13 percent say neither is the case.