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Senate Democrats are standing strong on letting the Bush tax cuts expire, and coming back in the new year to extend the tax cuts on income under $250,000. According to the Pew Research Center, they've got a leg up on the political argument.
The American people see higher taxes on the wealthy as important for both helping the economy, and helping create fairness.
By two-to-one (44% to 22%), the public says that raising taxes on incomes above $250,00o would help the economy rather than hurt it, while 24% say this would not make a difference. Moreover, an identical percentage (44%) says a tax increase on higher incomes would make the tax system more fair, while just 21% say it would make the system less fair.
A majority of Democrats, of course, support the tax increase, but a healthy plurality of independents agree that it would make the economy stronger and make the tax system more fair. Only hard-core Republicans who are millionaires or think they're going to be someday are resisting the idea.
Standing tough on letting the tax cuts expire is just a no-brainer for Democrats. It takes a potential hostage in the end-of-the-year "fiscal cliff" negotiations away from Republicans, preventing a potentially disastrous grand bargain. It allows Congress to do what it does best—nothing. And they've got the public squarely behind them. Win-win.
Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Jul 18, 2012 at 09:17 AM PDT.