(CNSNews.com) - Americans overwhelmingly believe that members of Congress should take pay cuts until there is a balanced federal budget, according to a new Rasmussen Poll. A slight plurality also thinks that the president should take a 50 percent pay cut -- and the survey found that voters believe that neither the president nor Congress should receive federal pensions after leaving office.
Eighty-two (82) percent of the 1,000 people polled said members of Congress should take a 25 percent pay cut until the federal budget is balanced. That is an increase from last August, when 75 percent of the respondents who were asked the same question – “Should members of Congress take a 25percent pay cut until the Federal Budget is balanced?” said, “Yes.”
In the lastest poll, meanwhile, when Rasmussen asked if the president should take a 50 percent pay cut until the budget is balanced, only 48 percent of those polled said yes.
Republicans overwhelmingly agreed (64 percent) that the president should sacrifice half of his pay, as did a 49 percent plurality of independents, but 57 percent of Democrats polled said they did not think the president should take a 50 percent pay cut.
In other findings, only 30 percent of those polled think that a balanced federal budget is “somewhat likely” in their lifetime, according to Rasmussen. Fewer than half of the people polled believe the cuts in the debt compromise bill will materialize.
Regardless of whether the federal budget is balanced, 59 percent of those polled believe that members of Congress should not receive federal pensions after leaving office. Fifty-two (52) percent said that former presidents shouldn’t receive a pension, which currently amount to $200,000 per year.
The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted July 28-29. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 3 percentage points, with a 95 percent level of confidence.