Poll: Across Demographics, More than Half of Voters Say U.S. Deficit Problem Demands Immediate Action

Craig Bannister | August 12, 2019 | 5:37pm EDT
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(Getty Images/Mark Wilson)

Slightly more than half of registered voters say that the U.S. can’t afford to wait any longer to address its deficit problem, results of a new Hill-HarrisX poll reveal.

In a survey of 1,001 respondents conducted August 3-4, 2019 and weighted to reflect a nationally-representative sample of registered voters, 52% said the nation’s deficit problem requires immediate attention.

At least 50% of respondents called the deficit problem is a top priority, regardless of sex or party affiliation, the survey found. Self-identified Independents were the most likely to say the deficit is a top priority (58%), compared to 50% of Democrats and 51% of Republicans.

“Is the U.S. deficit a problem that needs to be dealt with immediately, or are there other priorities that the government should deal with first?”

Deficit Should be Dealt with Immediately:

  • Total: 52%
  • Male: 55%
  • Female: 50%
  • Dems: 50%
  • GOP: 51%
  • Indep: 58%

On Monday, the U.S. Treasury Department released a statement disclosing that, through the first ten months of fiscal year 2019, the federal government ran a deficit of $866,812,000,000, reports:

“The federal government spent a record $3,727,014,000,000 in the first ten months of fiscal 2019 (October through July), according to the Monthly Treasury Statement released today.

“While spending that record $3,727,014,000,000, the government ran a deficit of $866,812,000,000.

“Before this year, the most that the federal government had ever spent in the first ten months of a fiscal year was in fiscal 2009, when the Treasury spent $3,576,745,930,000 (in constant June 2019 dollars, adjusted using the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator).”

The Hill-HarrisX poll was conducted a week after President Donald Trump signed into law a new budget deal that threatens to increase the national debt by $2 trillion, The Hill reports:

“The new budget deal increases government spending by $320 billion and lifts the nation’s borrowing limit through July 2021.

“However, leading up to the bill’s passage, some conservatives expressed concern over the measure, which is projected to add nearly $2 trillion to the national debt over the next decade.”

Results of the Hill-HarrisX survey have a sampling margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.


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