Tags: Poll | Voters | Prefer | Job | Creation | Deficit | Cuts

Poll: Voters Prefer Job Creation Over Deficit Cuts

Wednesday, 17 Nov 2010 01:47 PM

More voters express support for spending that spurs job creation than for efforts to cut the deficit, according to a poll released today.

The Quinnipiac University poll also shows that few of those surveyed expect President Barack Obama to make much progress with congressional leaders at a White House meeting, originally scheduled for tomorrow, that is likely to focus on economic issues.

Asked about their own priorities, 45 percent of those surveyed support additional spending to stimulate job growth, 32 percent want to see the federal budget deficit reduced, and 17 percent want lower taxes — even as Congress meets in a lame-duck session to debate the continuation of Bush-era tax cuts.

The 2001 and 2003 tax cuts are set to expire Dec. 31, and Republican congressional leaders are pressing for an extension for all income levels. Obama wants those tax breaks to expire for couples earning more than $250,000 a year and individuals with annual incomes of more than $200,000. In the aftermath of elections that will hand Republicans control of the House in January, Obama has said he is willing to negotiate.

Two days after the Nov. 2 elections that gave Republicans control of the House of Representatives starting in January, the president invited House and Senate leaders of both parties to the White House on Nov. 18. White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said yesterday that because of congressional Republicans’ scheduling conflicts, the meeting will be held Nov. 30.

“Americans want both sides to compromise,” Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute in Hamden, Connecticut, said in a statement today. “But they want the president to make concessions more than they do congressional Republicans.”

Low Expectations

By 73-22 percent, the voters surveyed by Quinnipiac Nov. 8-15 say the two sides are too far apart to produce meaningful results at the White House meeting, which Obama has said will consider economic issues Congress will weigh in the lame-duck session.

The survey of 2,424 registered voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

Among those surveyed, 35 percent say the Bush-era tax cuts should be extended for everyone, 43 percent say the cuts should be continued only on annual incomes of $250,000 or less for couples and $200,000 or less for individuals, and 14 percent say all of the tax cuts should expire.

Approval Ratings

In the aftermath of an election that handed at least 60 House seats to Republicans, the biggest loss for the Democratic Party since 1938, Obama’s approval rating in this survey is statistically unchanged from what was found in a Quinnipiac poll in September. Voters voiced disapproval of the job Obama is doing, 49-44 percent, in the survey released today and 47-44 percent in the Sept. 9 survey.

Even though voters have given Republicans control of the House in the next Congress, almost two-thirds (63 percent) of those surveyed disapprove of the job that Republicans in Congress are doing and 27 percent approve, the poll released today found. More — 66 percent — disapprove of the job that Democrats are doing, with 27 percent saying they approve.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the California Democrat who will preside over her chamber through the end of the year, draws a negative rating from 55 percent of those surveyed and a positive rating from 25 percent.

House Republican leader John Boehner of Ohio, in line to become speaker in January, still is little known among the American voting public, the poll shows. With ratings split 20 percent positive and 19 percent negative, 61 percent of those surveyed say they don’t know enough about Boehner to form an opinion of him.

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