NEWS AND OPINION:
Public patience with the 24 Democratic presidential hopefuls and the electoral process appears to be wearing thin very early in the election game. Let us consider the fact that 6-out-of-10 Americans say they are not looking forward to any future Democratic debates. So says a new Economist/YouGov poll.
This leery population includes 78% of Republicans, 68% of independents and a surprising 33% of Democrats.
It does not bode well if a full third of your most prized audience does not want to be there in the front row, cheering. The survey findings suggest that Americans may have developed Democratic fatigue.
Maybe it’s because they’re are just so many of those Democratic candidates to keep track of. Maybe it’s because those candidates are all speaking at the same decibel level. Maybe it’s because they’re stuck on anger, outrage and insult — possibly as a means to distinguish themselves as passionate and fearless.
Or maybe just noisy.
Maybe it’s because the candidates are mired in the same repeat topics that they revisit over and over again: Impeach President Trump and socialism.
Indeed, voters may have a premature case of candidate fatigue. They may be tired of the noise, but more importantly they may be tired of the policy. Consider that a new Politico/Morning Consult poll finds that 52% of U.S. voters say Congress should not stage impeachment proceedings against Mr. Trump; 90% of Republicans, 49% of independents and 19% of Democrats agree. This is not the first or last poll which will offer similar evidence.
Meanwhile, a new Fox News survey finds that 54% of voters say it would be a “bad thing” for the U.S. to move toward socialism. Gallup found that 51% of Americans also rejected socialism, while 57% predict that “most nations of the world” will have a democratic government in the next 50 years.
Meanwhile, the next debate takes place on September 12 and 13, to be broadcast live on ABC. The Democratic Party, incidentally, has sanctioned up to a dozen debates. So get ready.
NETWORKS TAKE AIM
The hostility continues.
“When network anchors and correspondents weren’t blaming Donald Trump‘s rhetoric for the recent mass shootings, they filled their morning shows with anti-gun rights rhetoric and hyped liberal gun control efforts. In the wake of the El Paso and Dayton shootings, ABC, CBS, NBC have exploited those tragedies to advance their anti-gun rights agenda,” writes Geoffrey Dickens, deputy research director for the Media Research Center, a conservative press watchdog.
In just five days of coverage in the immediate aftermath of the events, the networks filled their morning show programs with statements favoring gun control over gun rights by a ratio of roughly 17 to 1, says Mr. Dickens.
“Republicans and gun owners were set-up as the villains who stood in the way of Democrats who were trying to stop mass shootings with their calls for increased gun regulation,” he notes.
In the morning shows alone, the three networks aired 36 minutes of “anti-gun arguments.” There were, in contrast, about 2 minutes devoted to “pro-gun arguments,” all of which aired on CBS.
BIDEN’S TAX MESS
Democratic presidential hopeful former Vice President Joseph R. Biden spent much of his campaign time in Iowa this weekend promising to eliminate the tax cuts that accompanied President Trump‘s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. This may not play well in the heartland and elsewhere. Americans for Tax Reform has done the math, and here is what would befall Americans should Mr. Biden repeal the tax cuts.
“A family of four earning the median income of $73,000 would see a $2,000 tax increase. A single parent (with one child) making $41,000 would see a $1,300 tax increase. Millions of low and middle-income households would be stuck paying the Obamacare individual mandate tax,” the grassroots organization says.
In addition, utility bills would go up in all 50 states as a direct result of the corporate income tax increase, while small employers would face hardship due to the repeal of the 20% deduction for small business income.
Oh, and a few more things.
“The U.S. would have the highest corporate income tax rate in the developed world. Taxes would rise in every state and every congressional district. The Death Tax would ensnare more families and businesses. Millions of households would see their child tax credit and their standard deduction cut in half,” the organization advises.
AND SPEAKING OF TAXES
The Treasury Department and the IRS have quietly introduced a redesigned Form W-4 for tax year 2020, deeming it a “form that provides taxpayers with a more flexible and transparent withholding system.”
“Our dedicated staff at the Treasury and IRS worked tirelessly over the past year to produce a Form W-4 that is more accurate, transparent and simplifies the tax withholding experience for hardworking Americans,” says Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. “We are proud that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowered taxes for most Americans and are enthusiastic that the improved W-4 will help taxpayers better determine the correct withholding amount for their personal financial situation to more readily reap the benefits of historic tax reform.”
The redesigned Form W-4 uses a building block approach that replaces complicated worksheets with straightforward questions that make it easier for employees to determine a more accurate withholding.
POLL DU JOUR
• 34% of Americans say they are “happy” with their job; 32% of Republicans, 34% of independents and 35% of Democrats agree.
• 29% say they are “neither happy not unhappy” with their job; 21% of Republicans, 31% of independents and 31% of Democrats agree.
• 26% say they are “very happy” with their job; 39% of Republicans, 22% of independents and 22% of Democrats agree.
• 8% are “unhappy”; 8% of Republicans, 8% of independents and 9% of Democrats agree.
• 3% are “very unhappy”; 0% of Republicans, 5% of independents and 3% of Democrats agree.
Source: An Economist/YouGov survey of 1,500 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 3-6.
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