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Poll: Most say rich should pick up tab

Most Americans think the United States should raise taxes for the rich to balance the budget, according to a “60 Minutes”/Vanity Fair poll released yesterday.

Most Americans think the United States should raise taxes for the rich to balance the budget, according to a “60 Minutes”/Vanity Fair poll released yesterday.

President Barack Obama last month signed into law a two-year extension of Bush-era tax cuts for millions of Americans, including the wealthiest, in a compromise with Republicans.

Republicans, who this week take control of the House of Representatives, want to extend all Bush-era tax cuts “permanently” for the middle class and wealthier Americans. They are also demanding spending cuts to curb the $1.3 trillion deficit.

Nearly two-thirds of polled Americans said they’d like taxes for the wealthy increased as a first step to tackling the deficit, the poll showed.

The next most popular way — chosen by 20 percent — was to cut defense spending. Four percent would cut the Medicare government health insurance program for the elderly, and 3 percent would cut the Social Security retirement program, the poll showed.

Asked which part of the world they would fix first, the largest proportion of respondents — 36 percent — chose Washington, compared with 23 percent who picked the Middle East and 14 percent who chose Haiti.

The poll’s margin of error may be plus or minus 3 percentage points, “60 Minutes”/Vanity Fair said.

 
 
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