News Release

Public on Budget: Tax the Rich, Cut Military Spending


STEVEN KULL, skull at
Kull is director of the Program for Public Consultation, a joint program of the Center on Policy Attitudes and the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland, which released the study “Public Proposes Federal Budget Dramatically Different Than House or White House.” The study found: “When a representative sample of the American public was presented the federal budget, they proposed changes far different from those the Obama administration or the Republican-led House have proposed. The biggest difference in spending is that the public favored deep cuts in defense spending, while the administration and the House propose modest increases. However, the public also favored more spending on job training, education, and pollution control than did either the administration or the House. On average the public made a net reduction of $146 billion — far more than either the administration or the House called for. …

“On average respondents increased revenues by $292 billion. The largest portion was from income taxes: majorities increased taxes on incomes over $100,000 by 5 percent or more and increased them by 10 percent or more for incomes over $500,000. Majorities also increased corporate taxes and other excise taxes.”

Swanson is a campaigner with Roots Action, an online activist network, which today posted a series of polls examining public opinion on the budget:

Among the polls the group cites:

In order to reduce the national debt, would you support or oppose [ITEM]?:
72% tax the rich (with incomes over $250,000 a year)
42% cut the military
30% cut Medicaid
21% cut Medicare
Washington Post-ABC News Poll, conducted April 14-17, 2011

Expression of first choice policy:
55% cut the military
21% cut Medicare
13% cut Social Security
CBS-New York Times, Conducted January 15-19, 2011