Fewer than one in three Americans favor extending tax cuts enacted into law by former President George W. Bush when they expire at the end of this year, according to a CNN/Opinion Research poll released Aug. 20.
The survey finds that 31 percent say they support allowing the cuts to continue for all taxpayers, regardless of income level. By contrast, the poll finds 51 percent believe the reduced rates should be kept in place for families earning less than $250,000 each year, but not for households bringing in more than that cash amount.
The Obama administration, as well as many Democrats, have signaled an intent to leave the decreased rates in place, with the exception of for taxpayers earning an annual income that exceeds $250,000.
Jared Bernstein, chief economist to Vice President Joe Biden Jr., said that extending the tax cuts for the richest Americans would add $30-40 billion to the deficit annually, which could add up to $700 billion or so over a ten-year period.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office forecasted Aug. 19 that allowing the reduced rates to remain in place for all Americans could increase the federal debt to the point that the debt accounts for 8% of GDP by 2020.