Advocacy group poll: Concerns about debt rising

Advocacy group poll: Concerns about debt rising
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Voters’ concerns over rising deficits and the national debt grew in April as the GOP tax law and $1.3 trillion spending bill went into effect, according to a monthly poll from the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, which advocates for lowering the debt.

According to the survey, obtained by The Hill ahead of its general release, 78 percent of respondents agreed that addressing the debt should be among the top three priorities for Congress and the president, up from 73 percent in March. 

Similarly, 61 percent said the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction when it came to addressing the debt, up from 58 percent the previous month.

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“Voters understand that we are on a dangerous fiscal path that threatens our future,” said Peterson Foundation President Michael Peterson.

The public is evenly divided on if the issue could be resolved in the coming years, with 45 percent saying they were optimistic that there would be progress, and 46 percent expressing pessimism.

The nationwide telephone poll, conducted by the Global Strategy Group and North Star Opinion Research, included 1,006 registered voters. It took place between April 16 and April 19 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage point.

Earlier in the month, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released its semi-annual report on the nation’s economic and fiscal outlook, which found that the GOP tax plan would add nearly $1.9 trillion to deficits over the coming decade, higher than previously expected. 

It also found that if the spending path adopted in recent legislation on budget caps and bipartisan appropriations bills continued, deficits would rise by an additional $2 trillion. According to CBO, the nation was on track to reach its highest debt levels as a share of the economy since World War II by the end of the decade.