Most Americans want to see tax increases on the nation’s wealthiest individuals and businesses included in any plan that Congress’ joint super committee on deficit reduction produces for dealing with the nation’s budget problems.
According to a CNN/ORC International poll released Wednesday, 63 percent of 1,008 surveyed said they favor tax hikes for higher-income Americans and businesses.
At the same time, 57 percent said they also want to see major cuts in domestic spending as part of the committee’s deficit-reduction proposal.
However, nearly two-thirds of those polled said lawmakers should keep their hands off Social Security and Medicare, and 53 percent said they did not want any cuts to come from the Pentagon budget. In addition, 9 in 10 respondents are against tax increases on the middle class and lower-income earners.
“Republicans and Democrats disagree on the need for cuts in domestic and military spending, as well as tax increases on higher-income Americans, but they do agree that the committee should stay away from tax hikes for the middle class and major changes in Social Security and Medicare,” said CNN polling director Keating Holland.
The survey found that a third of Americans still believe that taxing higher-income earners could hurt job creation, but 62 percent said higher taxes on the wealthy would enable the government to spend more on programs to help the poor. Those sentiments, observed Keating, have changed little “since the 1990s.”
The telephone poll of 1008 Americans was conducted for CNN by ORC International Aug. 5-7 both before and after S&P’s downgrading last Friday of the U.S. credit rating. The survey sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
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