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Monday, July 30, 2012

Gallup: Raising Taxes On Wealthy Americans Least Important Key Issue Out of 12

By Susan Duclos

Despite Barack Obama, Democrats and Liberals constant harping on "taxing the rich" in the name of so-called fairness, Americans rate that issue last on the list of 12 that Gallup asked about in their July 19-22, 2012 interviews.

The top three issues are creating jobs, reducing corruption in the federal government, and reducing the federal budget deficit.

Looking at the chart above, raising taxes on the wealthy is the only issue listed that when adding those who call it "extremely important" and those that list it as "very important", doesn't even top 50 percent.

Raising taxes, especially on the wealthy, has been Barack Obama reelection campaign theme and was used aggressively to help incite the now, all-but-gone, Occupy Wall Street protests last year, yet it has not resonated with Americans, showing an extreme disconnect between Obama and voters who think there are far more important issues to focus on and want the next president to prioritize as it captured in Gallup's headline, "Americans Want Next President to Prioritize Jobs, Corruption"

According to another Gallup release, from interviews conducted in the same time-frame, July 19-22, 2012, the top issues, federal budget deficit, economy, creating jobs and taxes all show Americans favoring Mitt Romney as being "better able to handle" those key issues than Obama.

But Obama is more likeable, according to that same survey.

Romney's advantage on economic issues likely stems from Americans' generally negative assessment of Obama's economic stewardship as well as Romney's own business background. Americans continue to be more pessimistic than optimistic about the economy, and President Obama has gotten low marks for his handling of the economy for most of his presidency.

And while the Obama campaign has tried to criticize Romney's business record, particularly his time as head of Bain Capital, the public by a wide margin sees his background as a plus. Specifically, the July 19-22 USA Today/Gallup poll finds 63% of Americans saying Romney's business background would cause him to make good decisions about how to deal with economic problems the U.S. would face, while 29% say it would cause him to make bad decisions. A majority of independents say Romney would make good decisions.

In November, voters will make their choice of Mitt Romney or Barack Obama and much will depend on what the candidate's see as priorities. While Romney has suffered criticisms from plodding through with a narrowed focus on the economy and jobs and largely ignoring the side issues that come up throughout the campaign, with a mention or some weekend interviews, then singlemindedly going right back to the issues he wants to focus on, that may, in the end, be exactly what hands him the presidency in 2012.

In November, American voters are going to choose the candidate that prioritizes what those voters think is most important.