Chart of the Day: Reducing the Federal Deficit

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


Via Plain Blog, this is from a poll conducted by Emily Swanson and Mark Blumenthal:

According to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll, 69 percent of Americans think that most of the federal budget deficit could be eliminated by cutting “waste and fraud.”

Um, what? More than two-thirds of Americans think the budget deficit is largely a result of waste and fraud? But wait! It’s all explained by a deeper dive into the poll results:

A more detailed look at which programs were named by Democrats and by Republicans suggests that for many, waste is indeed defined as “money spent on some government program I don’t like.”

So there you have it. By logical concatenation, two-thirds of the American public think the budget deficit could be tamed largely by cutting spending on programs they don’t like. That’s a little more defensible. Now all we have to do is figure out which programs a majority of us don’t like.1

1Hint: There aren’t any.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate