According to a new poll conducted by Democratic and Republican pollsters, a majority of Americans like what the President has been proposing. From MSNBC:
Strong majorities of Democrats and independents prefer that Democratic congressional leaders make compromises in this budget debate, while almost 70 percent of independents want Republican leaders to do the same. And nearly six in 10 favor President Barack Obama’s proposal to lower the federal deficit by $4 trillion over 10 years by cutting federal spending, raising tax revenue from the wealthy and reducing some Medicare spending.
By comparison, only about a third of respondents prefer the House Republican proposal to reduce the deficit by $2.5 trillion over 10 years through cutting spending alone and not raising additional revenues.
So, most folks, including Republicans, don’t like the House Republicans proposal, and the majority favor the plan that includes raising taxes on the wealthy and eliminating tax breaks for big business. Who’s gumming up the works?
But there’s one hurdle to this compromise: A majority of Republicans — and nearly two-thirds of Tea Party supporters — want GOP leaders to hold their ground.
So, nearly 60 percent (the actual number is 58%) like the President’s deal, but none of the folks on the right want to give way. They’re pushing for Republicans to hold their ground and hang steadfast against a deal the majority approve of. So much for the will of the people.
What we are continuing to see is the schizophrenic nature of the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party. On one hand, they want to starve government, eliminate taxes, allow the US to default by standing firm on the debt ceiling. But they also want their Social Security, Medicare and other services untouched. They don’t seem to (or choose not to) understand that governing a nation is not about picking an ideology and following it blindly regardless of the outcome or realities surrounding it.
If you want Social Security and Medicare, it needs to be paid for. There are absolutely areas where spending can be cut, but you can’t cut everything. In fact, the Tea Party will scream to the heavens at any mention of cutting their precious programs. You still need revenues, and those come from taxes, plain and simple. Eliminating tax loopholes like those that allow Boeing to have a negative tax rate for three years running, helps that side of the budget equation. But to the Tea Party folk, eliminating tax loopholes is the same as raising taxes, so they fight against it tooth and nail.
They are under the misguided delusion that if they keep cutting taxes, things will get better. They ignore the fact that tax rates in the US are at the lowest point in 50 years. If cutting taxes were actually that beneficial, business would be booming. Quite the opposite has happened. Profit-taking by corporations that flaunt tax law to pay little or no tax, or in Boeing’s case, actually receive refunds, has created a situation where the average taxpayer is paying the taxes for them. Cutting their taxes does not mean they’ll spend more – it means they’ll put more into their war chests.
The majority of Americans want the debt ceiling deal done, and want it done now. The Tea Party influence is holding the debt ceiling hostage. They don’t believe it’s a real problem. Wait until the interest increases from the potential of default start to kick in…