The American Majority Project Polling

Our review of a broad range of reputable polls on economic issues finds a big difference between the policy solutions that dominate the discussion among policymakers and media pundits and what the majority of average citizens would like to be brought to the forefront.

Social Security

Harris Interactive. February 6-13, 2012.

  • “Only 12% of the public want to see a cut in Social Security payments”.

KPC Poll. March 9, 2012.

  • “Over two thirds of Americans agree that the government has a role in providing a safety net for their personal financial security, including Social Security, Medicare, and protection from fraud.”

CNN/ORC Poll. September 23-25, 2011.

  • “Would you say that the Social Security system has been good for the country, has been bad for the country, or has had no effect on the country?” 79% answered good.

National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Health Care. Sept 8-11, 2011.

  • Voters overwhelmingly approve of raising the cap on Social Security wages above $106,000 (71% in favor, 21% oppose).
  • Raising retirement age is opposed (65% oppose, 30% in favor).

The Washington Post/Bloomberg News Poll, October 6-9, 2011

  • 83% oppose reducing Social Security benefits in order to reduce the nation’s budget deficit.

Pew Research Center, June 15-19, 2011

  • 60% support keeping benefits as they are under Social Security as being more important than reducing the budget deficit.

The Washington Post/ABC News Poll, March 10-13, 2011

  • 53% support Collecting Social Security taxes on all the money a worker earns, rather than taxing only up to about $107,000 of annual income.
  • 57% oppose raising the retirement age from 66 to 67.
  • 52% oppose further reducing the benefits paid to people who retire early. For instance, people who retire at age 62 would get 63% of their full benefits, rather than the current 70%
  • 66% oppose reducing benefits for future enrollees.

Gallup Poll, January 14-16, 2011

  • 64% oppose spending cuts to Social Security.

Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill Poll – Social Security, February 9, 2011

  • 48% oppose raising the Social Security age for people born after 1960.
  • 67% believe Social Security taxes should be paid on all or most worker income

Lake Research Partners, October 31 to November 2, 2010

  • 82% oppose cutting Social Security benefits in order to reduce the debt.
  • 67% oppose cutting Social Security to make the program more solvent in the long term.
  • 63% oppose reducing Social Security benefits for people earning more than $60,000 or more when they retire.
  • 69% oppose raising the Social Security retirement age to 69.
  • 66% support enacting Social Security taxes on wages about $106,800 (the Pay Roll Tax Cap) to make the program more solvent.

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll, February 24-28, 2011

  • 49% believe it will not be necessary to cut spending on Social Security to reduce the national deficit. (22% said Yes and 27% had no opinion).
  • 77% believe cutting Social Security to help reduce the budget deficit is mostly or totally unacceptable.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 54% oppose raising the age of eligibility for Social Security to 69.

NBC News/Wall Street Journal, April 28, 2011

  • 58% want tax increases on the wealthy as part of a deficit solution vs 36%.

Pew Research Poll, June 15-19

  • 60% say Keep Social Security and Medicare benefits as they are vs 32% say change them to reduce deficits.

Associated Press-GfK Poll, March 5-9, 2011

  • 54% believe it is possible to balance the budget without cutting spending on Social Security

Medicare

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll. February 2012.

  • 70 percent of Americans say “Medicare should continue as it is today, with the government guaranteeing seniors health insurance and making sure that everyone gets the same defined set of benefits.”

National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Health Care. Sept 8-11, 2011.

  • When asked about raising the eligibility age for Medicare, 57% opposed and 39% were in favor.

The Washington Post/Bloomberg News Poll, October 6-9, 2011

  • 82% oppose reducing Medicate benefits in order to reduce the nation’s budget deficit.

Bloomberg Poll, June 17-20, 2011

  • 57% believe they would be worse off if they were to buy their own private insurance with the help of government subsidies instead of having traditional Medicare.

Pew Research Center, June 15-19, 2011

  • 61% say they already pay enough of the cost of their health care under Medicare.

Gallup Poll, January 14-16, 2011

  • 64% oppose spending cuts to Medicare.

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll, February 24-28, 2011

  • 54% believe it will not be necessary to cut spending on Medicare to reduce the national deficit.
  • 76% believe cutting Medicare to help reduce the budget deficit is mostly or totally unacceptable.
  • 60% oppose turning the Medicare system into a government-issued voucher program, which would require the beneficiary to purchase private health insurance.

First Focus and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research Poll, April 13-18, 2011

  • 70% oppose cuts/changes to the Medicare system as described in the House Republican Budget.
  • 49% support not reducing funds to Medicare.
  • 53% believe replacing the current Medicare program with a voucher system in which retirees will receive vouchers to use to purchase subsidized insurance from private insurance companies for those 55 or older is totally or mostly unacceptable.

CBS News/The New York Times Poll, April 15-20, 2011

  • 61% believe that Medicare is currently “worth the costs.”
  • 76% think government has the responsibility to provide health care coverage to the elderly.
  • 49% believe higher-income beneficiaries should pay more in taxes.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 54% oppose replacing Medicare with a system in which government vouchers would help participants pay for their own health insurance.
  • 76% oppose reducing benefits for Medicare.

Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill Poll, April 28, 2011

  • 53% said they would oppose a reduction in Medicare benefits in order to get the deficit/debt under control.

Pew Research Poll, March 8-14, 2011

  • 65% oppose changes to Social Security as a way to reduce the budget deficit.

Associated Press-GfK Poll, March 5-9, 2011

  • 54% believe it is possible to balance the budget without cutting Medicare.

Washington Post-ABC News Poll, April 17, 2011

  • 78% oppose cutting Medicare spending.
  • 65% believe Medicare should remain as it is today, with a defined set of benefits for people over 65, rather than receiving vouchers to purchase private insurance with.
    • 64% of those who support changing Medicare to a voucher program would oppose replacing Medicare as it is today with a voucher program if the cost of private insurance rises faster than the value of the vouchers, causing seniors to pay more of their own money for health insurance.

Medicaid

Bloomberg National Poll. March 8-11, 2012.

  • When asked about the health care law passed last year, 37% “It should be repealed”, 46% “It may need small modifications, but we should see how it works”

Pew Research Center. March 7-11, 2012.

  • “About half of Americans (53%) say that Congress should either expand the health care law (33%) or leave it as it is (20%); 38% favor its repeal.”

Pew Research Center, June 15-19, 2011

  • 58% say people should not have their Medicaid benefits taken away in order to deal with state budget problems.

ABC News/Washington Post Poll, April 14-17, 2011

  • 69% oppose cutting spending on Medicaid in order to reduce the national debt.

The Washington Post/ABC Poll, March 10-13, 2011

  • 76% oppose cutting state funding for the Medicaid health insurance program (23% somewhat oppose, 53% strongly oppose).

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll, February 24-28, 2011

  • 67% believe cutting Medicaid to help reduce the budget deficit is mostly or totally unacceptable.

First Focus and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research Poll, April 13-18, 2011

  • 49% support not reducing funds to Medicaid.
  • 73% oppose cuts to the Children’s Health Insurance Program
  • 54% support not reducing funds to federal child nutrition programs that provide meals to low-income children in schools.
  • 51% support not reducing the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
  • 63% oppose a plan to provide government more flexibility with federal funds if it meant eliminating insurance coverage for some children.

CBS News/The New York Times Poll

  • 56% think government has the responsibility to provide health care coverage to the poor.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 49% said to cut defense “even if it means eliminating programs that bring jobs to your state,” rather than make cuts to the Medicaid program.

Lake Research Partner’s 2011 Community Voices on the Economy Poll

  • 49% say they would be extremely or very concerned if Congress – in its efforts to reduce the federal budget – significantly cut spending on programs that help families and children.


Taxes

CNN/ORC Poll, October 14-16, 2011.

  • 76% support increasing the taxes paid by people who make more than one million dollars a year.
  • 63% support increasing the taxes paid by people who make more than $250,000 a year.

NBC News/Wall Street Journal Poll, October 6-10, 2011.

  • 64% think it is a good idea for the wealthy and corporations to pay their fair share in taxes and can afford to pay more for programs and government operations.

The Washington Post/Bloomberg News Poll, October 6-9, 2011.

  • 68% support raising taxes on households with incomes of $250,000 per year or higher in order to reduce the nation’s budget deficit.

Kaiser Family Foundation Health Tracking Poll, September 7-12, 2011.

  • 78% support repealing the Bush tax cuts as a major or minor way to reduce the federal budget deficit.

Pew Research Poll, July 28-31, 2011.

  • 72% describe the recent debt ceiling negotiations in negative terms such as: terrible, disappointing, childish, and a joke.
  • 2% describe the debt ceiling negotiations are positive

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll, February 24-28, 2011

  • 74% believe eliminating tax credits for the oil and gas industries to help reduce the budget deficit is mostly or totally acceptable.
  • 68% believe that phasing out the Bush tax cuts for families earning $250,000 per year is mostly or totally acceptable to help reduce the budget deficit.

First Focus and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research Poll, April 13-18, 2011

  • 72% of one group of 512 participants favored raising taxes on people earning more than $1 million a year over cutting important programs once they received details on the impact of the budget cuts. That percentage had been 62% before receiving details of the cuts.
  • 48% of a second group of 512 participants supported raising taxes in general over cutting programs once they received details on what programs would be cut, with 38% favoring the cuts. That percentage had been 41% in favor of higher taxes and 40% in favor of cuts before receiving details of the cuts.
  • 63% believe it is totally or mostly acceptable to eliminate the Bush tax cuts for families earning over $250,000 per year.
  • 64% believe it is totally or mostly unacceptable to cut the income tax rate for those earning over $372,000 a year from 35% to 25%
  • 53% believe it is totally or mostly unacceptable to reduce the corporate tax rate from 35% to 25% .

Associated Press and Gfk Poll, March 24-28, 2011

  • 54% believe the amount they pay for in taxes is “totally fair.”

60 Minutes/Vanity Fair Poll, November 29-December 2, 2010

  • 61% support taxing the wealthy as a way to balance the budget:.

CBS News/The New York Times Poll

  • 72% support raising taxes on households earning $250,000 a year or more.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 59% support repealing the tax cuts for households earning more than $250,000 per year.

Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill Poll, April 28, 2011

  • 64% supported raising taxes on those earning more than $250,000 per year.

Washington Post-ABC News Poll, April 17, 2011

  • 72% support raising taxes on Americans with incomes over $250,000 per year.

Military Spending

The Washington Post/ Bloomberg News Poll, October 6-9, 2011

  • 51% support reducing military spending in order to reduce the nation’s budget deficit.

CBS News Poll, September 28 – October 2, 2011

  • 62% support decreasing the number of troops in Afghanistan now.

Kaiser Family Foundation Health Tracking Poll, September 7-12, 2011

  • 67% support minor or major spending reductions to national defense.

First Focus and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research Poll, April 13-18, 2011

  • 67% support minor or major reductions in funds to national defense.

CBS News/The New York Times Poll, April 15-20, 2011

  • 45% would cut the military’s budget before cutting Medicare and Social Security.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 66% support removing all troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.
  • 49% said to cut defense “even if it means eliminating programs that bring jobs to your state.”

Pew Research Poll, March 8-14, 2011

  • 49% are in favor of reducing defense and military spending as a way to reduce the deficit.

Union Employees and Collective Bargaining Rights

The Washington Post/ABC Poll, March 10-13, 2011

  • 81% support the rights of workers to unionize to negotiate with their employers.
  • 67% support the rights of state employees to unionize.

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll, February 24-28, 2011

  • 77% believe public employees who belong to a union and work for the state government, city government, or school districts should have the same right to bargain when it comes to their health care, pension and other benefits like those members of unions who work for private companies.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 64% of respondents said public employees should have the right to collectively bargain for their wages.

Pew Research Poll, February 22-March 1, 2011

  • 47% said they have a very or mostly favorable opinion of labor unions.

Job Creation and the Economy

CBS News/New York Times Poll. March 7-11, 2012.

  • 51% of respondents said the most important problem is the economy and jobs, the second answer was other with 22%.

ABC News/ Washington Post Poll, October 31 – November 3, 2011

  • 56% say the economy and jobs is the single most important issue in their choice for president with only 2% saying the federal budget deficit.
  • 60% say the federal government should pursue policies that try to reduce the gap between wealthy and less well-of Americans.

CNN/ORC Poll, October 14-16, 2011

  • 75% favor providing federal money to state governments to allow them to hire teachers and first responders.

NBC News/Wall Street Journal Poll, October 6-10, 2011

  • 66% think the President and the Congress should worry about creating jobs now more than reducing the federal deficit.

CBS News/New York Times Poll, September 10-15, 2011

  • 80% support the idea of spending money on the nation’s infrastructure, such as bridges, airports, and schools, in order to try to create jobs.

Pew Research Center/ Washington Post, September 1-4, 2011

  • 77% support a lot or a little additional government spending on roads, bridges, or public works projects in order to help the job situation in the country.

The Mellman Group and Ayres, McHenry & Associates Poll, June 14-19, 2011

  • 67% want job creation while just 29% want Washington to focus on deficit reduction when given an “either/or” choice.
  • 94% of voters say creating manufacturing jobs is either “one of the most important” things government can do or “very important.”.
  • 32% see the GOP working to create jobs while 41% say Democrats in Congress are working to create jobs.

Gallup Poll, May 5-8, 2011

  • 22% ranked "unemployment/jobs" as the most important problem facing the country, nearly twice as many as those who said the budget deficit or debt was most important (12%). (35% ranked "the economy in general" as the top problem.)

Gallup Poll, July 7-10, 2011

  • 58% of people asked identified job creation and the economy as the most important issue facing the country today. Only 16% said the deficit was most important for the country.

Bloomberg News Poll, March 4-7, 2011

  • 56% believe creating jobs, rather than spending cuts is the more important priority for the federal government right now.

Lake Research Partners 2011 Community Voices on the Economy Poll, March 15-24, 2011

  • 56% agree that “it is time for government to take a larger and stronger role in making the economy work for the average American.”
  • 62% believe the government should focus on creating jobs, even if it means increasing the deficit in the short term.

Democracy Corps/Campaign for America’s Future, November 2-3, 2010.

  • 78% supported a five-year strategy to revive manufacturing in America that included ending tax breaks that reward moving jobs abroad, enforcing buy-America provisions on government spending, countering unfair trade and currency practices by China and others, and investing in domestic research and technology.

Polling Information

Bloomberg National Poll
Conducted by telephone March 8 to 11, 2012, among a random national sample of 1,002 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

CBS News/New York Times Poll
Conducted by telephone March 7 to 11, 2012, among a random national sample of 1,009 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

Gallup
Conducted by telephone Jan. 5 to 8, 2012, among a random national sample of 1,011 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

Harris Interactive
Conducted online Feb. 6 to 13, 2012, among a national sample of 2,056 adults. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, religion and household income were weighted where necessary. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.

KPC Poll
Conducted by telephone March 1 to 4, 2012, among a random national sample of 1,015 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll
Conducted by telephone Feb. 13 to 19, 2012, among a nationally reprasentative sample of 1,519 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

Pew Research Center
Most of the analysis in this report is based on telephone interviews conducted between March 1 to 4, 2012, among a national sample of 1,503 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

CNN/ORC
Conducted through interviews between Sept. 23 to 25, 2012, among a national sample of 1,010 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Health Care
Conducted by telephone Sept. 8 to 12, 2011, among a national sample of 800 likely voters.

The Washington Post/ABC News Poll
Conducted by telephone March 10 to 13, 2011, among a random national sample of 1,005 adults, including users of both landline and cellular phones.

Gallup Poll
January 14-16, 2011: Telephone interviews were conducted with a random sample of 1,032 adults, aged 18+, living in the continental U.S., selected using random-digit dial sampling. May 5-8, 2011: Telephone interviews were conducted with a random sample of 1,018 adults, aged 18 and older, living in the continental U.S., selected using random-digit-dial sampling.

Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill Poll – Social Security
1,000 likely voters on February 9, 2011 were asked specific questions about Social Security.

Lake Research Partners Poll
1,200 likely voters nationwide were polled October 31-November 2, 2010 about Social Security.

The Wall Street Journal/NBC News Poll
1,000 adults were telephoned, including 200 by cell phone, February 24-28, 2011.

First Focus and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research Poll
1,024 likely 2012 voters were called April 13-18, 2011. It includes a survey of 114 cell phone interviews.

Associated Press/Gfk Poll
1,001 Americans were called March 24-28, 2011.

60 Minutes/Vanity Fair Poll
1,137 American adults were phoned November 29 – December 2, 2010.

CBS News/The New York Times Poll

1,224 adults nationwide were interviewed by phone April 15-20, 2011. There was an oversampling of Republicans for a total of 543 interviews.

Bloomberg News Poll
1,001 adults were interviewed March 4-7, 2011.

Pew Research Poll
Survey A: 1504 adults were interviewed February 22-March1, 2011.
Survey B: 1525 adults were interviewed March 8-14, 2011.

Associated Press-GfK Poll

1,001 adults nationwide were interviewed March 5-9, 2011.

Washington Post-ABC News Poll

1,001 adults were interviewed by both conventional and cellular telephones April 17, 2011.

Lake Research Partner’s 2011 Community Voices on the Economy Poll
1,151 adults nationwide were interviewed March 15-24, 2011.

Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill
1,000 likely voters were interviewed April 28, 2011.

NBC News/Wall Street Journal
1000 adults were interviewed over the phone between July 14-17, 2011.

The Mellman Group and Ayres, McHenry & Associates Poll
1,202 likely 2012 voters were interviewed between June 14 through June 19, 2011.