What do Americans want for the U.S. budget? An online poll showed nine out of ten respondents want to spare Social Security and other human service programs from cuts; raise taxes for corporations and wealthy individuals; invest $1.7 billion in infrastructure and job creation; and cut Pentagon spending $2.3 trillion over ten years, says the New Priorities Network. The debt deal currently on the table in Washington is not a match.
The non-scientific Federal Budget Preference Poll on the New Priorities website asks respondents to choose among three alternative budgets for the coming fiscal year:
the Ryan (GOP) budget passed by the US House this spring,
President Obama's budget, and
the People's Budget drafted by the Congressional Progressive Caucus, of which Rep. Raul Grijalva is co-chair.
The budgets contain a wide range of deficit reduction targets, from $1.6 trillion in the Ryan budget to $4.7 trillion in the CPC's. 14,706 people had responded as of 9 am Friday July 22, and 93.24% chose the People's Budget, 5.19% Obama's, and 1.57% Ryan's. The poll is still open.
"The New Priorities poll confirms what pollsters at the University of Maryland and the McClatchy-Marist poll are telling us," said Michael Eisenscher, poll director for the New Priorities Network. "Americans don't want to cut Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare. They want more jobs and services. And they want to pay for those by raising taxes on corporations, letting Bush's tax cuts for the wealthy expire, and really cutting the Pentagon, whose budget doubled over the last ten years."
Chuck Kaufman, chair of the Tucson New Priorities Network coalition said, "How can politicians be seriously discussing cuts to Social Security and Medicare when they are ready to approve the largest Pentagon budget since World War II and continue to throw our tax dollars away in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, and Libya."
Tucson activist Paul Teitelbaum, who maintains the local coalition's webpage said, "Let's close the over 1,000 US military bases and facilities around the world before we talk about any US domestic spending cuts. I'll take jobs in the US over more than 200 US military-owned golf courses in Europe any day."