What the 1% Want from Washington

I don’t think I’ve ever heard of an opinion poll targeted at the rich. But two political science professors did a survey of people in the Chicago area with an average net worth of $14 million. Their research found that:

“The biggest concern of this top 1% of wealth-holders was curbing budget deficits and government spending. When surveyed, they ranked those things as priorities three times as often as they did unemployment β€” and far more often than any other issue….Β They were also much less likely to favor raising taxes on high-income people, instead advocating that entitlement programs like Social Security and healthcare be cut to balance the budget.

“The wealthy opposed β€” while most Americans favor β€” instituting a system of national health insurance, raising the minimum wage to above poverty levels, increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit and providing a ‘decent standard of living’ for the unemployed. They were also against the federal government helping with or providing jobs for those who cannot find private employment.”

Which explains why so many politicians talk about reducing the budget deficit instead ofΒ stimulating the economy andΒ helping the unemployed and underemployed. And why so many politicians want to cut Social Security and never even think about expanding it.


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