Majority support social programs over tax cuts: Roper Survey FWD

Tom Boland (
Tue, 9 Feb 1999 23:17:04 -0800 (PST)

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FWD  Business Wire - Feb 9, 1999


     Majority Feels Surplus Should Fund Programs
     Rather Than Provide Tax Reduction

     NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 9, 1999--

While Congress is preoccupied with impeachment proceedings,
the American people have other things on their minds,
according to a survey by Roper Starch Worldwide. In what
appears to be a shift away from the decade-long
anti-big-government attitude, the study shows that an
increasing number of Americans believe the federal government
should make "a major effort" to address society's problems.

Topping the list, more than three-quarters of Americans (78%,
up 3 since 1995) say the government should be concerned with
crime and drugs. Other top issues the public feels government
should address include the cost of health care (74%, up 5), the
quality of public education (72%, up 5), protecting citizens
from terrorism (65%, new item), finding a cure for AIDS
(62%, up 4) and homelessness (58%, up 8).

"The survey's results could almost be looked at as a
post-impeachment To Do list for Congress," says Edward B.
Keller, president of Roper Starch, "especially for politicians
wishing to put the scandal-tarnished past year behind them."

In addition, there have been notably large increases in the
percentages calling for a major government effort to limit
nuclear weapons (65%, up 12), protect individuals from
invasion of privacy (54%, up 17), rebuild the nation's roads,
bridges and tunnels (50%, up 16), help negotiate an
Israeli-Arab peace settlement (36%, up 16), try to improve the
way presidents are chosen (40%, up 9) and improve the quality
of the environment (58%, up 9).

Similarly, when asked about the budget surplus, the public
thinks, by an almost two-to-one margin, that the money should
be used to create or fund programs that "deal with national
issues" like homelessness, education or the environment (56%
agree) rather than use it to "ensure a reduction in taxes" 32%.

The Roper Reports study involved face-to-face interviews
nationwide with 2,000 representative adults age 18 or older.
The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points. Roper
Starch is one of the nation's largest market research and
consulting firms, with headquarters in New York and offices in
Princeton, NJ, Newport Beach, CA, Dallas, TX, Washington,
D.C., London and Hong Kong.


**In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is
distributed without charge or profit to those who have expressed a prior
interest in receiving this type of information for non-profit research and
educational purposes only.**

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