Americans have a decidedly mixed reaction to the “fiscal cliff” agreement reached by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama this week, with 43% saying they approve and 45% saying they disapprove. Two-thirds of Democrats approve of the agreement, while almost as many Republicans disapprove. Independents are slightly more likely to disapprove than approve.
These results are based on a one-day poll of 1,026 national adults conducted Thursday, Jan. 3, two days after the agreement was reached. The strong rank-and-file Republican opposition to the agreement appears to be in line with the opposition among Republican House members. The agreement was initially approved by a strong bipartisan vote of 89 to 8 in the Democratically controlled Senate, but passed by a much slimmer 257-167 margin in the Republican-controlled House, with 151 Republicans voting against it.
Attitudes toward the agreement are split along ideological lines, in a fashion parallel to the partisan differences. Liberals are highly likely to support the agreement, while conservatives oppose it. Moderates tilt toward approval of the agreement.
Just wait until Americans receive their first paychecks for 2013 and discover their payroll taxes have increased 2 per cent.
The Fiscal Cliff compromise was a bum deal and while President Obama succeeded in winning more taxes for the rich and others, nobody really won here. Plus, the national debt continues to rise.