73 percent of national adults understand that spending too much on federal programs that are either not needed or wasteful is the primary cause for our $14 trillion-plus national debt.
Only 22 percent believe that not raising enough money via taxes is to blame for the deficit.
When respondents were asked how they would prefer Congress attempt to reduce the federal budget deficit, 20 percent said only with spending cuts and 28 percent responded mostly with spending cuts, totaling 48 percent that want Washington to focus on cutting spending.
Despite the far left's howling about raising taxes being the be-all end-all of our deficit problems, only nine percent prefer the deficit be reduced mostly with tax increases and a mere two percent believe the deficit problem can be handled using only tax increases, totaling 11 percent of national adults prefer for Washington to use raising taxes to bring down our debt.
37 percent believe that spending cuts and tax increases together should be used.
The major partisan distinctions in response to this question reflect the choice between mostly/only spending cuts versus the equal use of spending cuts and tax increases. Republicans are most likely to favor the former; Democrats, the latter. Independents' views are between these two extremes. Relatively few Americans of any partisan identification favor mostly or only using tax increases to reduce the deficit.
Americans have been clearly informed of the positions the two political parties in Washington hold, having witnessed the very public battle over the recent budget deal passed where Republicans fought hard to include as many spending cuts as possible and Democrats fighting tooth and nail to limit those cuts.
According to another Gallup poll, 48 percent of Americans favor Republicans on the issue of the federal deficit with only 36 favoring Democrats. (via CNBC)
The federal budget was the only issue in which respondents clearly preferred one party over the other, with 48 percent favoring Republicans and 36 percent Democrats.
The poll found that Americans favored Republicans by smaller margins on four other issues: Afghanistan, the U.S. economy, immigration and jobs. Democrats held a small advantage on handling healthcare, the poll found.
When faced with poll after poll showing Americans know where the problems lie and showing preference to how Americans want the deficit reductions handled, the far left fall back to the position of "Americans are too stupid to really understand the problem". The mere 11 percent of the population that want only or mostly taxes increases, in their minds, are the only ones who truly have the brains to understand.
This is evidenced by an Yglesias post, which seems to be the meme the far left use whenever public opinion puts them so far into the minority.
His title "The Public At Least Thinks It Wants Spending Cuts To Be A Very Large Part of Deficit Reduction."
Arrogance be thy name.
According to the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll asking Americans about the direction of the country, 60 percent believe America to be on the wrong track going the wrong way with only 25 percent believing the opposite.
Rasmussen shows the number saying we are on the wrong track to 71 percent and CBS News/NY Times shows 70 percent say wrong track.
In 2010, midterms, Americans made a huge statement by giving the GOP a net gain in the House of Representatives which not only gave them control but was the largest net gain of seats seen in over 70 years.
Americans also handed Senate Republicans more seats, although Democrats still control the Senate (by a much smaller margin) and the White House.
During the budget recent budget battle, Speaker of the House, John Boehner, was quoted as saying "We control one-half of one-third of the government. We can't impose our will on another body. We can't impose our will on the Senate. All we can do is to fight for all of the spending cuts that we can get an agreement to."
While Congress controls the purse strings, no bill that passes the House of Representatives which includes massive spending cuts, as a plurality of the public prefers the deficit to be handled, can get to floor of the Senate because Harry Reid, a Democrat, is Senate majority leader and has the power to bring it to the floor and Democrats hold a small majority, so even if brought up, the GOP cannot get it passed.
If they did, the president, a Democrat himself, has the power to veto it.
This puts the choice directly into the hands of the American public in 2012. Are people like Yglesias correct in believing the Americans only "think" they know what they want, but don't "really mean" it?
I don't think so. I personally think Americans are smart. They understand the problems. They understand the solutions. Most importantly, they understand who is standing in the way of reaching those solutions.
In 2012, 23 Democratic Senate seats are in play and only 10 Republican held seats and the Democrat in the White House faces a reelection challenge.
Americans will have a clear choice of whether they wish to continue to see spending out of control or whether they want to see spending cuts without the massive battle over every dollar cut by a political party that seems to believe that spending more money than you have and continuing to borrow money is simply business as usual in Washington.
If they balanced their personal checkbooks in the same manner as they do Washington's, they would be paying more in overdraft fees to their banks than the whole budget itself.