Fiscal Cliff Survey: Americans Would Rather Have Higher Debt Than Higher Taxes

Since election season has come to a close, the most recent economic worry for many Americans is the looming “fiscal cliff,” in which certain laws and tax cuts currently in effect may expire in 2013 and potentially stall economic growth. What do Americans think about the fiscal cliff and what do they think are the most important economic issues facing the country?

national debt

Fiscal Cliff

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 36% of US respondents said that they are not aware of the issues surrounding the so-called fiscal cliff. 20%, however, said they are very worried about the fiscal cliff. 28% said they are somewhat worried. 12% said they are not very worried. And just 5% of Americans said that they are not at all worried about the fiscal cliff.

Economic Factors

Overall, 33% of respondents said they think increased tax rates would have the biggest negative impact for them. 32% said that slowed economic growth would have the biggest negative impact. 20% said they think cuts to certain government programs would have the worst effect. And just 16% said they think an increased federal deficit would have the worst effect.

58% of respondents said that if they had to choose, they would rather have a higher national debt but pay fewer taxes and have more government programs. And 42% said that they would rather have a lower national debt but pay higher tax rates and have fewer government programs.

Finding Solutions

However, everyday Americans aren’t the ones who are charged with the task of solving these issues. Only 6% of Americans said they completely trust members of Congress to come up with a fitting solution to these economic issues. 27% said they somewhat trust Congress to solve these problems. 56% said they don’t trust Congress to come up with a good solution. And 13% said they have no opinion.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Our National Debt from Flickr

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on November 12 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Anne Pilon
Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.