Overwhelming majority of voters say tax increases will harm the economy

WASHINGTON , D.C. – Throughout the presidential campaign, Sen. John Kerry has repeatedly called for raising taxes on small business owners, investors, and families. But voters apparently do not agree with his plan. A survey released today by the independent polling firm Rasmussen Reports shows that voters think, by a 3-1 margin, that raising taxes next year would hurt the economy.

“The American electorate realizes that taking away tax cuts is the same as raising taxes, and they know our economy just can’t afford it,” said ATR President Grover Norquist. “John Kerry wants go against the will and best interest of voters and raise taxes.”

The Rasmussen study comes on the heels of the successful passage of extending middle class tax cut in both the House and the Senate last week. The bi-partisan legislation extends the child tax credit at $1,000 per year, continues the expanded new 10% tax rate that lowers tax bills for virtually all taxpayers, and provide protection from the marriage penalty through 2010. In addition, the measure extends for one year relief from the alternative minimum tax, which was intended to make sure that wealthy Americans did not escape paying taxes but is starting to ensnare increasing ranks of middle income earners. The tax cut passed the House 339-65 and the Senate 92-3. John Kerry was not present to cast a vote for the legislation.

“Congress has taken decisive action to extend parts of the Bush tax relief for the next 6 years, but we can’t stop there. The cuts will still expire in 2010, and many of Bush’s critical relief measure will end sooner,” continued Norquist. “Congress must act to support the will of the American people, make all of President’s tax cuts permanent, and defend taxpayers from damaging hikes in the future.”

The Rasmussen survey found that just 23 percent of American voters believe President Bush will raise their taxes, which is significantly down from previous surveys and for good reason. President Bush has signed the signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) and is opposed to increasing taxes.

“President Bush and John Kerry’s fiscal platforms are different as night and day,” concluded Norquist. “The President stands with taxpayers and has pledged never to raise taxes, while John Kerry is actively trying to increase taxes, to the detriment of our economy. Voters must know this simple truth when their making their choice November 2.”