polling that Data for Progress has been conducting this past summer in 11 states, among them key Election 2020 battlegrounds like Arizona, North Carolina, and Iowa. Overall, the poll found that 61 percent of voters in these states would be “more likely” to vote for Senate candidates who support placing a 2 percent wealth tax “on the assets of individuals with a net worth over $50 million.”
Even 51 percent of Republican voters in these states say they would be more likely to support candidates so inclined. Only 33 percent of Republicans say that such support would sour them on a candidate.
Meanwhile, adds the new Data for Progress poll, less than 27 percent of voters want the existing tax system to remain in place. Americans, in other words, would be eager to see candidates debate whether we ought to be shearing our grand private fortunes down to democratic size.
The grand pooh-bahs who run the Commission on Presidential Debates have no particular interest in fostering a debate of this sort. We should. The future of our democracy may well hang on the questions we get our body politic to start asking.
Sam Pizzigati co-edits Inequality.org. His recent books include: The Case for a Maximum Wage (Polity Books) and The Rich Don’t Always Win: The Forgotten Triumph over Plutocracy that Created the American Middle Class, 1900-1970 (Seven Stories Press).