POLL: Most Americans Want The Government To Help Fix Income Inequality

POLL: Most Americans Want The Government To Help Fix Income Inequality

A Washington Post/ABC News poll suggests that even though Republicans currently have an advantage when it comes to the economy, the public prefers Democratic economic solutions.

Fifty-seven percent of Americans believe the federal government “should pursue policies that try to reduce the gap between wealthy and less well-off Americans,” and 64 percent say that current policies favor the wealthy.

President Barack Obama recently renewed his warning that the growing income inequality not only hurts low-income Americans, it also threatens the nation’s already shrinking middle class.

Among proposals meant to shrink the growing gap between the wealthy and poor, Obama and Democrats have said they want to increase the minimum wage, an idea that a vast majority of Americans  – 66 percent — support. More specifically, the poll finds that 77 percent of Americans believe the minimum wage should be raised over the current $7.25 – the wage mandated by the federal government, though several states have set higher wages.

Only 13 percent say that the minimum wage should remain at $7.25 or be lowered and 2 percent say there should be no minimum wage.

With only 34 percent of Americans expressing approval for congressional Democrats – 10 points greater than the 24 percent who feel the same about congressional Republicans – fighting for a higher minimum wage gives them a popular battle cry as they enter the midterm election season.

If Democrats do decide to take on the minimum wage in 2014, they will certainly meet opposition from the right, which has long maintained that raising the minimum wage will motivate people to seek only “entry jobs.”

Most recently, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) responded to the president’s call to use government to fight inequality by saying he “promotes more government instead of more freedom.”

Photo: mSeattle via Flickr

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