New Poll Finds Voters Concerned About Unemployment Benefits, Inflation, Tax Increases, and Excessive Spending

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Posted by Isabelle Morales on Thursday, June 3rd, 2021, 4:20 PM PERMALINK

Voters are concerned about unemployment benefits, inflation, the impact of tax increases, and excessive spending, according to a recent Harvard CAPS and Harris poll.

Despite President Biden repeatedly claiming that his policies have overwhelming public support, this is yet another poll that questions this narrative.  

82 percent of voters say that there are a lot of unfilled jobs, with 76 percent of voters saying that a lot of people are staying on unemployment in order to make more money. 

This sentiment is correct. At the current federal unemployment supplement level of $300, 37 percent of workers make more on unemployment than at work. In this way, the federal government is offering over one-third of the workforce an incentive not to work. 

88 percent of voters say they are concerned about increased inflation. When asked what causes inflation, the top three answers were "Massive government spending," "Significant amounts of money being injected in the economy by the Federal Reserve," and "Uncontrollable government deficits." 

 Despite the Biden administration’s assurances that inflation should not be a concern, voters are still deeply concerned about it. After all, inflation is spiking. In April, consumer prices increased 4.2 percent overall. Used car and truck prices rose by about 21 percent, with a whopping 10 percent increase in April alone. Further, lumber prices have increased by 124 percent in 2021.    

With so many voters attributing inflation to increased spending, it’s likely that concerns about Biden’s $6 trillion budget proposal will grow.  

Most voters are concerned about the negative effects of raising taxes, with 64 percent saying an increase in the corporate income tax would increase consumer costs and 69 percent saying that raising taxes could cost the economy jobs and growth. 

Again, voters are correct. Biden’s tax hikes would eliminate one million jobs in the first two years and would eliminate 600,000 jobs per year over the first decade, according to a study by economists John W. Diamond and George R. Zodrow. As noted by Stephen Entin of the Tax Foundation, workers bear nearly 70 percent of the cost of a corporate tax through lower wages and fewer jobs.   

Further, according to a recent National Bureau of Economic Research paper, 31 percent of the corporate tax rate is borne by consumers through higher prices of goods and services. 

An overwhelming majority of voters are worried about how Biden's $5 trillion infrastructure and families plan will impact them: 

  • 82 percent of voters are concerned that it will lead to higher taxes down the line.
  • 79 percent are concerned that the plan will lead to economic uncertainty. 
  • 80 percent of voters are concerned it will lead to runaway inflation. 
  • 77 percent are concerned it will lead to lower economic growth.
  • 76 percent of voters are concerned that it will negatively impact their family finances.

 

Photo Credit: U.S. Embassy Jerusalem

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