Monday, April 13, 2009

National "Tea Party" protests held while Americans' views about income taxes hits all-time high

The conservative movement cannot get a break. After spending months hyping the upcoming national day of conservative protests centered around April 15th- the federal deadline to file income taxes (who waits until April 15th, anymore? Who doesn't file electronically anymore?), Gallup reports that Americans' views on the federal income tax is at an all-time high:

A new Gallup Poll finds 48% of Americans saying the amount of federal income taxes they pay is "about right," with 46% saying "too high" -- one of the most positive assessments Gallup has measured since 1956. Typically, a majority of Americans say their taxes are too high, and relatively few say their taxes are too low.

The slightly more positive view this year may reflect a public response to President Barack Obama's economic stimulus and budget plans. He has promised not to raise taxes on Americans making less than $250,000, while cutting taxes for lower- and middle-income Americans. The latter has already begun, as the government has reduced the withholding amount for federal income taxes from middle- and lower-income American workers' paychecks.

In this year's poll, slim majorities of both lower- and middle-income Americans say they pay about the right amount of taxes, while upper-income Americans tend to think they pay too much. The views of upper-income Americans have not changed in the past year, while both middle- and lower-income Americans are more likely to say they pay the right amount of tax.

So after all the hype over the Tea Parties, all we're seeing is an ideology that is becoming further and further away from the mainstream.

Protest Obama's stimulus package on April 15th? Well, then you're also protesting the tax cuts that were a big component of that stimulus package. I'll say it again-- a protest against the stimulus package is a protest for HIGHER taxes.

If the conservative movement thinks it can become politically relevant again by protesting for higher taxes, please be my guest. Teabag yourselves to your hearts' content.

1 comment:

Randy said...

You asked "Who doesn't file electronically anymore?" - according to reports, about 42%. The April 15th date is largely symbolic with many of the Tea Parties taking place before or after the magic date. I attended one such party last night and may attend one-two more. One this weekend is scheduled to have a counter-protest. I may attend both or just the counter-protest to see what's going on.

The movement is more than just about taxes, there's a strong undercurrent. What will happen in the long run is anyone's guess, but all politicians should pay attention to what's going on and try to understand why.

Glad to see you blogging and find your spot,