50% of Liberals Say U.S. Can Afford to Remain Locked Down ‘as Long as Gov’t Officials Say’

Craig Bannister | April 20, 2020 | 2:37pm EDT
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(Getty Images/Tommaso Botti)

While the GAO says the federal government's current fiscal path is “unsustainable,” a third of U.S. likely voters – and 50% of self-identified liberals – believe the U.S. can afford to remain shut down for “as long as government officials say is necessary,” results of a new Rasmussen Reports survey reveals.

“How much longer can the United States afford to remain locked down?” Rasmussen asked 1,000 U.S. likely voters in a national survey conducted April 14-15, 2020, giving them four choices: “Until May 1,” “Another six weeks,” “Until the end of Summer,” “As long as government officials say is necessary” and “Not Sure.”

Sixty-two percent of all likely voters said the U.S. can afford to stay locked down no longer than summer’s end, while 33% said they believe the U.S. can afford to remain shut down for “as long as government officials say is necessary.”

But, 50% of self-identified liberals said the nation can afford to stay shut down for as long as government officials want.

Only 22% of conservatives, 35% of moderates and 26% of voters of unidentified ideology believe the U.S. can afford to remain locked down indefinitely, as long as government officials say it should.

As reported, the debt of the federal government topped $24 trillion for the first time last Tuesday and is on a path the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) warns “is unsustainable”:

In its annual report to Congress on the nation’s fiscal health, which was published last month, the Government Accountability Office, said the federal government’s “fiscal path is unsustainable.”

“Long-term fiscal projections by GAO, CBO, and in the 2019 Financial Report show that, absent policy changes, the federal government continues to face an unsustainable long-term fiscal path,” said the GAO report.

“Although each of these long-term projections uses somewhat different assumptions, their conclusions are the same: over the long term, the imbalance between spending and revenue that is built into current law and policy will lead to (1) deficits exceeding $1 trillion each year beginning in fiscal year 2020 and (2) both the annual deficit and cumulative total debt held by the public continuing to grow as shares of GDP,” said GAO.

“This situation—in which debt grows faster than GDP—means the current federal fiscal path is unsustainable,” GAO concluded.

Meanwhile, Congress is continuing to craft bills to fund massive government spending initiatives to help Americans and businesses endure the devastating effects of the shutdown.

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