Raleigh, N.C. – North Carolina voters strongly support the General Assembly and Gov. Bev Perdue cutting spending to balance the $3.7 billion state budget shortfall, according to a new poll released today by the Civitas Institute.
Eighty-three percent said they would rather the Governor and state Legislature cut spending than raise taxes. Fourteen percent of voters said they want taxes raised, and 2 percent said they do not know.
This approach to dealing with North Carolina’s massive budget crisis has the support of voters of all political affiliations. Republican (95 percent-5 percent) and Democratic voters (79 percent-17 percent) both said the Governor and state Legislature should cut spending instead of raising taxes. Unaffiliated voters also support spending cuts over raising taxes by a 77 percent-17 percent margin.
“Regardless of political party, voters support spending cuts, not increased taxes, in order to reconcile a record budget deficit in the midst of a weakened economy and continuing high unemployment,” said Civitas Institute President Francis De Luca.
Even when given the choice of cutting education spending instead of raising taxes, 49 percent of voters said they would rather the Governor and state Legislature cut spending even if it meant cutting funds for education and other government programs. Forty percent said they would rather raise taxes to avoid such cuts. Seven percent of voters said they do not have an opinion.
Furthermore, voters said the General Assembly should eliminate any government program that has not been shown to produce positive results by an 85 percent-9 percent margin. Six percent said they do not have an opinion.
The Civitas Poll is the only monthly live-caller poll of critical issues facing North Carolina. For more information on Civitas polling see www.nccivitas.org/media/poll-results/.
Full text of questions:
“As you may know, North Carolina is facing an estimated $3.7 billion dollar state budget shortfall next year. Thinking about this, would you rather the Governor and state Legislature cut spending or raise your taxes?”
Cut Spending – 83%
Raise Taxes – 14%
Don’t Know – 2%
“As you may know, North Carolina is facing an estimated three point seven billion dollar state budget shortfall next year. Thinking about this, would you rather the Governor and state Legislature cut spending even if it meant cutting funds for education and other government programs, or raise your taxes to avoid these cuts?”
Cutting Funds for Education and Other Government Programs – 49%
Raise Taxes to Avoid Cuts – 40%
Don’t Know – 7%
“And should the North Carolina General Assembly eliminate any government program that has not been shown to produce results?”
Yes – 85%
No – 9%
Don’t Know – 6%
Click here for full results and crosstabs.
This poll of 600 registered voters in North Carolina was conducted December 15-16, 2010 by Public Opinion Strategies of Alexandria, Virginia. This survey has a margin of error of +4.0% in 95 out of 100 cases. To ensure a representative sample, interviews were conducted proportional to voter registration figures for each county in the state based on the most recent figures compiled by the State Board of Elections.