(Week of 6/2/2012) Two-thirds of Americans believe it is extremely important for the government to enact policies that grow and expand the economy. And the solutions that Americans think might help are varied, with many in this week’s Economist/YouGov Poll supporting tax cuts for the middle class and poor, government spending on infrastructure, and deficit reduction as means to stimulate the economy.
There is a note of self-interest when it comes to the support of tax cuts. 62% say a tax cut for the middle class — the group that most Americans identify with — would stimulate the economy. 44% think a tax cut for poor people would do the same. But just 23% think cutting taxes on the rich would stimulate the economy.
Only 31% of those making more than $100,000 a year say tax cuts on the wealthy would help; 26% say that policy would slow the economy down.
More people think tax cuts for the middle class would be effective than say that about any of the other suggestions; however, nearly half think increasing government spending on infrastructure or reducing the deficit would also help stimulate the economy. But two suggestions, one favored by Democrats and one by Republicans, are less likely to be viewed as effective solutions. Only 37% think raising the minimum wage would stimulate the economy (nearly a quarter think that would slow the economy), while 32% believe reducing environmental regulations would help.
Those options receive decidedly partisan support: majorities of Democrats think raising the minimum wage and infrastructure spending would stimulate the economy, while majorities of Republicans think deficit reduction and reducing environmental regulations would.
Photo source: Press Association