Voters support raising taxes on incomes above $250,000 and on capital gains but support few cuts to entitlements, a new poll from Quinnipiac University shows. The poll comes as President Barack Obama and Congressional Republicans are attempting to broker a deal to avert the so-called “fiscal cliff.”
By a wide, 65-31 margin, they support Obama’s plan to impose higher tax rates on incomes above $250,000. And 47 per cent of voters favour increasing taxes on capital gains, compared with 40 per cent who are against it.
When it comes to potential spending, however, the poll basically confirms that Americans support the blanket idea of entitlement cuts but relinquish that support when faced with specific entitlements that could affect them.
Here’s a breakdown:
- 70 – 25 per cent oppose cutting Medicaid spending;
- 51 – 44 per cent oppose gradually raising the age for Medicare eligibility;
- 55 – 41 per cent oppose cuts in military spending;
- 67 – 23 per cent oppose eliminating the home mortgage interest deduction
That said, 66 per cent believe the best way to reduce the deficit is a combination of tax increases and spending cuts.
Because of their general willingness to increase taxes on higher incomes, Americans also believe that it’s a bad idea for their member of Congress to sign a no-tax pledge — the kind that anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist has used to hold politicians accountable.