Poll: Americans Like Fairer Taxes, Hate Benefit Cuts

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Nov. 14 2011 9:32 AM

Poll: Americans Like Fairer Taxes, Hate Benefit Cuts

File these under "totally unsurprising results from the GWU Battleground poll that still, typically, don't affect what Washington is actually considering doing." For example, the supercommittee is understood, increasingly, as a once-in-a-decade chance at cutting back entitlement spending. Surprise: Americans still hate that idea. Here's how two entitlement reforms are polling.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

Making hundreds of millions of dollars in spending cuts to Medicare and Medicaid through increasing beneficiary costs
Yes - 29%
No - 75%
Changing the way in which increases in Social Security benefits are calculated in order to lower program costs and lower future benefits
Yes - 38%
No - 56%
Advertisement

What do Americans like? As ever, they like the idea of pushing the tax code onto more wealthy people.

Increasing taxes on wealthy Americans and corporations
Yes - 66%
No - 31%
Closing tax loopholes and reforming the tax code to make the tax code fairer
Yes - 89%
No - 7%

The ray of hope for liberals: There are a couple of Republicans who see the power and the use of taking preferential tax codes away from the rich. The best news for the supercommittee all day might by Tom Coburn's report on "Subsidies of the Rich and Famous," which exposes the worst code abuses with a handy picture of a rich guy summoning dollar bills as if casting a spell in Final Fantasy III.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.