A recent McClatchy-Marist poll seems to indicate that Americans are increasingly fearful about the rising national debt and generally pessimistic about the recent downturn in the economy. Their message: Raise taxes on the wealthy and protect Medicare and Medicaid.
The poll also indicated that responders do not believe that the Federal government should raise the legal debt ceiling that will be the next political battleground in Congress. Raising the debt ceiling translates into more borrowing. Fiscal experts argue that the failure to raise it could force the government into default, create turmoil in credit markets, and push the economy into a deeper tailspin.
By a margin of 63 to 34 percent voters support raising taxes on those earning more than $250,000. Support for the proposal by Democrats was 83 to 15 percent, while Republicans opposed it 54 to 43 percent.
Public opposition to the House Republican efforts to cut Medicare and Medicaid was 80 to 18 percent. Even among conservatives, only 29 percent supported the proposal and 68 percent opposed it.