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Vulnerable on Taxes

8:20 AM, Oct 10, 2009 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
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A new Rasmussen poll suggests that the task now is to educate the public about the Senate Democrats' health-care legislation--to show that "it's a tax hike dressed in a lab coat," and in particular that it's a middle-class tax hike masquerading as middle-class-friendly health reform. If the tax hikes in the Baucus bill are brought front and center, the legislation will face big problems:

54% Favor Middle-Class Tax Cuts Over New Spending on Health Care:

"Thirty-three percent (33%) of voters say new spending for health care reform is more important. But 54% rate middle class tax cuts as the priority over more health care spending. Thirteen percent (13%) aren't sure.

These findings are identical to ones just before Congress' August recess and prior to President Obama's effort to jump start his health care reform initiative with a nationally televised speech to Congress.

Although such an amendment was defeated in a party line vote in the Senate committee, 59% of voters favor putting a provision in the health care plan that would prohibit any new taxes, fees or penalties on families who make less than $250,000 a year.

Only 29% of voters are willing to pay higher taxes so all Americans can be provided with health insurance.

Fifty-nine percent (59%) are opposed to paying more in taxes to provide universal health care, up five points since May. Twelve percent (12%) aren't sure."