Tags: poor | wealthy | respondents | government

Pew-USA Today Survey: 60 Percent in US Say Economic System Unfairly Favors Wealthy

By    |   Friday, 24 January 2014 08:29 AM

A majority of Americans see a basic injustice in our economic system, according to a survey from Pew Research Center and USA Today.

Of the 1,504 adults survey Jan. 15 through 19, 60 percent believe the economic system unfairly favors the wealthy, as opposed to being fair for all, while 36 percent disagree.

But at the same time, 60 percent of the respondents maintain that people who want to get ahead can succeed if they are willing to work hard, while 38 percent say hard work can't guarantee success, up from 28 percent 10 years ago.

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Meanwhile, 49 percent believe government aid to the poor does more good than harm, because people can't get out of poverty until their basic needs are met. In contrast, 44 percent believe government aid to the poor does more harm than good by making people too dependent on the government.

Asked what is more important in explaining why people are rich, 51 percent listed having more advantages than others, while 38 percent listed working harder than others.

A majority of the respondents believe the government should be addressing the gap between the wealthy and everyone else. While 69 percent say the government should do something, only 43 percent say it should be doing a lot and 26 percent say the government should take some action.

Separately, Larry Summers, a former economic adviser to President Barack Obama, says an assault on the wealthy isn't a helpful approach to the unequal distribution of income.

"America succeeds by raising everybody up. It doesn't succeed by tearing anybody down," he told CNBC. "The rhetoric of envy and the rhetoric of tearing down, I don't think, is the right rhetoric for America's leaders."

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Economy
A majority of Americans see a basic injustice in our economic system, according to a survey from Pew Research Center and USA Today.
poor,wealthy,respondents,government
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2014-29-24
Friday, 24 January 2014 08:29 AM
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