While voters overwhelmingly say corporations are to blame, they do differentiate a bit among those corporations. When it comes to oil and gas companies, a plurality of 44% call it “price gouging.” When it’s big pharmaceutical companies, 54% call it “corporate greed.” “Corporations exploiting consumers” is also a popular description among Navigator’s survey group.
Respondents are also very open to hearing more from President Joe Biden on the economy and very supportive of what they think might be in his plan. “Just half (51%) report hearing ‘a lot’ or ‘some’ about Biden and Democrats’ economic plan, but majorities of Democrats (89%), independents (57%), and every racial group support it, along with a plurality of Republicans (47%).”
All this reinforces what Groundwork Collaborative found in a recent poll with Data for Progress. In that survey, “voters overwhelmingly believe corporations are raising prices unfairly to earn record profits.”
“By a 60-32 point margin,” that survey found “voters agree that corporations are taking advantage of the pandemic to raise prices and grow profits—and reject the premise that corporations have ‘no choice but to raise prices.’” The trope Republicans tried to push that it’s all the fault of greedy workers who refuse to take jobs unless they get paid better isn’t flying with those surveyed in this poll.
“When asked whom they blame more for inflation—corporations or rising wages of workers—voters overwhelmingly blame corporations for increasing prices to profit more—by a 55-point margin [77% to 16%].” And inflation is they key concern for them, having increased from 36% in February to 44% by early May.
“Over and over, corporations are telling us about their corporate profiteering strategies—and the public is taking notice,” said Groundwork’s executive director Lindsay Owens. “By wide margins, voters say corporations are raising prices simply because they can—and they want lawmakers to put a stop to it.”
Elie Mystal is on Daily Kos' The Brief podcast