NYT Poll: Cut Spending, but Not Social Security

Friday, 21 Jan 2011 11:44 AM

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Most Americans want the federal government to cut back on programs that benefit them instead of raising their taxes to pay for those programs, according to a new poll by The New York Times and CBS News. Majorities in the survey also believe that such cuts are Poll,tax hikes,benefit cuts,Social Security,Medicare,military spending,the deficit,CBS News,The New York Timesnecessary and that tax hikes are not -- except when it comes to Medicare and Social Security.

A majority (55 percent) chose decreased military spending over cuts to Medicare (21 percent) or Social Security (13 percent). Nearly two-thirds chose higher payroll taxes for those two programs over reduced benefits.


While 7 of 10 Americans call the deficit a “very serious” problem, the Times concludes that voters’ “sometimes contradictory impulses” leave politicians facing “political crosscurrents ... as they gird for debate over how to address the fiscal woes of a nation with an aging population, a complex tax system and an accumulated debt that is starting to weigh on the economy,”


In a poll question considering a different menu of domestic programs, cutting education spending was the least popular option, at 8 percent. There was less opposition to spending cuts for roads, bridges and other infrastructure (34 percent), science and medical research (26 percent), and aid to the unemployed and poor (21 percent).

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