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Support for Infrastructure Plan Goes Up When Corporate Tax Increase Is Mentioned

Biden is proposing increasing the corporate tax rate from 21 percent to 28 percent to help pay for the plan.

President Joe Biden speaks from the Treaty Room in the White House on April 14, 2021, in Washington, D.C.

New polling suggests that President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan is, for the most part, well received by the American people. But support for the plan appears to grow when voters are told that it would be paid for in part by raising taxes on corporations.

The current corporate tax rate sits at 21 percent. It was reduced from 35 percent as part of the Trump tax cuts. While a number of politicians sought to reduce that old rate, the dramatic 14 percent cut in the tax rate for businesses passed during the Trump presidency was seen as too severe by many.

Biden is proposing to fund his infrastructure plan, which has a price tag of more than $2 trillion, by partially restoring taxes on corporations to 28 percent, still well-below the rate it was before 2018.

While a plurality of Americans back the idea of Biden’s plan, there appears to be trepidation by some voters to “go big” on infrastructure. In a Quinnipiac University poll released this week, 44 percent of respondents said they support Biden’s infrastructure initiative, while 38 percent said they opposed it. Nineteen percent either did not give an answer in the poll or didn’t have enough information to form an opinion about it.

Based on other questions in the poll, however, it appears that those who are unsure about the infrastructure plan are worried about how it would be paid for.

When the same question was asked but respondents were told that the plan for infrastructure would be paid for by raising taxes on corporations, support for the plan jumped up 9 points to 53 percent. Thirty-nine percent said they still opposed the idea, while only 9 percent said they didn’t know enough or didn’t want to share an answer with pollsters.

Respondents were also receptive to raising taxes, in a general sense, on high income earners and on corporations, even when the question was not linked to infrastructure funding. When queried if taxes should be raised for those earning more than $400,000, for example, 64 percent said they backed the idea, while 62 percent also said they supported raising taxes on corporations, too.

Other polling seems to suggest that support for the infrastructure plan goes up when specifics are mentioned. A recent CNBC All-America Economic Survey poll found that only 36 percent of Americans supported the plan while 33 percent opposed. Thirty-one percent said they didn’t know enough about it to pick a side.

When asked about whether they support the infrastructure package’s goals of fixing roads and bridges, however, 87 percent said they backed that idea. Eighty-two percent also said they supported efforts to raise pay for caregivers to the elderly in the bill, while 78 percent backed the plan to expand high-speed broadband internet access that was also included in the bill.

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