Public Supports Obama’s Progressive Proposals

The public approves of plans the president laid out in his State of the Union address to keep powerful institutions accountable and responsible, writes Ruy Teixeira.

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President Barack Obama made a number of important progressive proposals in his State of the Union address that were—surprise!—uniformly opposed by conservatives. In contrast, the public reacted quite positively to these proposals as demonstrated by a recent National Journal poll.

In that poll, 76 percent supported imposing a minimum tax on money American companies earn overseas to encourage U.S. job creation. Seventy percent supported imposing a fee on large banks to be used to help homeowners refinance mortgages at low interest rates. Sixty-five percent supported establishing a new rule that those who earn $1 million or more annually must pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. And 58 percent supported reducing federal aid to colleges that raise tuition too fast.

the public agrees with obama's progressive proposals

There’s a theme here: the idea that even big institutions and the wealthy need to conduct themselves responsibly and make contributions to the common good. These data show the public gets it even if conservatives don’t.

Ruy Teixeira is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. To learn more about his public opinion analysis, go to the Media and Progressive Values page and the Progressive Studies program page of our website.

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Ruy Teixeira

Former Senior Fellow

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