• Polling

Three in Five Americans Support Increasing IRS Funding to “Crack Down on Wealthy Tax Cheats”

Friday, January 13, 2023 By Bryan Bennett
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Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.
Key takeaways
  • Support for the Inflation Reduction Act remains strong, with overwhelming and bipartisan majorities supporting the insulin price cap for seniors on Medicare.
  • Public support jumps significantly for recent IRS funding when framed as “cracking down on wealthy tax cheats.”
  • Republican elected officials who oppose raising the debt ceiling are best described as putting Americans’ livelihoods at risk and only seeking political gains.

Though Americans Are Still Pessimistic About the Economy, Fewer Say It Is Getting Worse or Personally Financially Uneasy

A majority (54%) of Americans still say the economy is getting worse, though the share is down from 60% in late November.

  • Three in five (59%) say they are “uneasy” about their personal financial situation, down from 64% in November, while 39% say they are “confident.” A majority of Black Americans (55%) say they are confident in their personal financial situation.

Perceptions of Rising Grocery Costs Remain High While Declining Shares Say Gas Prices Are Going Up

Republicans are most likely to report grocery costs “going up, a significant amount” (82%) compared to 71% of Democrats and 73% of independents. • The share of independents who say the price of gas is going up has fallen by 8 points since late November (from 84% to 76%).

Two in Three Continue to Support the Inflation Reduction Act, Including Three in Five Independents

Despite Republican attacks on increased IRS funding from the Inflation Reduction Act, more than two in five Republicans continue to support the plan (41%).

The Inflation Reduction Act’s Newly Enacted Insulin Price Cap Is Popular Among Bipartisan Majorities

Majorities of every partisan, racial, and age group support the insulin price cap, including independents (67% support) and Republicans (71%). Americans over the age of 65 (83%) are most likely to support it, though at least three in four 18-44 year-olds (75%) and 45-64 year-olds (79%) also support the policy.

Framing Increased IRS Funding as Helping to “Crack Down on Wealthy Tax Cheats” Notably Increases Support

Independents are a net 54 points more likely to support new funding for the IRS in order to “crack down on wealthy tax cheats” (net +32 support) than without this context (net -22 support).

Americans Most Oppose GOP House Moving to End Guarantee of SS/Medicare, Ban Books, Prevent Lower Drug Prices

Pluralities of independents oppose each of a range of potential Republican actions, except for ending financial support for Ukraine.

  • Republicans who are not very conservative are more likely than their “very conservative” counterparts to oppose each item tested, particularly banning abortions, impeaching President Biden, and repealing the Affordable Care Act.

Best Responses to Conservative IRS Funding Attacks Focus on GOP Protecting Rich Donors, Tax Cheats

The strongest rebuttals to a conservative criticism about increasing IRS funding focus on making the rich pay their fair share while stopping Republicans from protecting their rich donors (+6 progressive statement) and going after tax cheats (+4).

One in Five Are Not Sure About Congress Raising the Debt Ceiling Though a Plurality Support It; Blame Is Diffuse If They Fail

Republicans are the only partisan or racial group in which a majority (57%) oppose increasing the debt ceiling, though more than a quarter of Republicans (27%) do support it.

A Range of Responses to a Conservative Argument Bring the Debt Ceiling Debate to a Draw

Each of four progressive rebuttals tested was competitive with a conservative argument blaming Democrats if Congress fails to reach a new deal on the debt ceiling for “irresponsibly spending government money.”

Republicans Best Described As Putting Livelihoods At Risk, Seeking Political Gains in Debt Ceiling Debate

Democrats and independents are most likely to describe Republicans as “putting Americans’ livelihoods at risk” (44% and 42%, respectively) and being “only interested in political gains, even if they are at the expense of the country” (50% and 31%).

The Economy Is the Prevailing Issue Americans Consider in Their Evaluation of the Country’s Path, Whether Good or Bad

“The national economy” is top-of-mind among both those who say the country is headed in the right direction (40% say it is an issue they are thinking about the most) and those who say it is off on the wrong track (59%).

  • Democrats who say the country is headed on the wrong track cite political division (47%) and the economy (50%) nearly equally, while Republicans are more clearly focused on the economy (63%).


About The Study

Global Strategy Group conducted public opinion surveys among a sample of 1,000 registered voters from January 5-January 9, 2023. 100 additional interviews were conducted among Hispanic voters. 74 additional interviews were conducted among Asian American and Pacific Islander voters. 100 additional interviews were conducted among African American voters. 101 additional interviews were conducted among independent voters.

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About Navigator

In a world where the news cycle is the length of a tweet, our leaders often lack the real-time public-sentiment analysis to shape the best approaches to talking about the issues that matter the most. Navigator is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates by conducting research and reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press. Navigator is a project led by pollsters from Global Strategy Group and GBAO along with an advisory committee, including: Andrea Purse, progressive strategist; Arkadi Gerney, The Hub Project; Joel Payne, The Hub Project; Christina Reynolds, EMILY’s List; Delvone Michael, Working Families; Felicia Wong, Roosevelt Institute; Mike Podhorzer, AFL-CIO; Jesse Ferguson, progressive strategist; Navin Nayak, Center for American Progress Action Fund; Stephanie Valencia, EquisLabs; and Melanie Newman, Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

For press inquiries contact: press@navigatorresearch.org