No fiscal cliff hysteria here. Democracy Corps, working with progressive groups, did an election-night survey that shows voters don't want austerity, aren't willing to cut Social Security and Medicare, and see jobs as more important than deficit reduction:
While elites assume the fiscal cliff is about deficit reduction and avoiding a contraction in the economy, voters want progress to create jobs over the next five years. Voters want growth, not austerity, and above all, do not see ‘entitlements’ as on the table.
· Two-thirds give an intense positive response to a “plan to invest in new industries and rebuild the country and create jobs over the next five years.” That is 5 points higher than “a plan to dramatically reduce the deficit to allow the economy to grow over next five years.”
· By 67 to 26 percent, voters say the priority should be growth rather deficit reduction.
There is no evidence that voters have any interest in the contours of Simpson-Bowles approach to the budget.
· Over 60 percent rule out cuts in Medicare and Social Security as part of a deficit reduction package.
· Almost three-quarters find acceptable in any such plan creating a new higher rate for those earning over a million dollars.
By putting Paul Ryan on the budget, Republicans decided to put social insurance for seniors on the table, but the Obama’s biggest advantage over Romney was on whom voters trust to deal with Medicare: 51 to 38 percent, a 13-point advantage.
If you've been listening, President Obama has been saying all along that he intends to get his debt deal with the Republicans -- and so have his surrogates. Pay attention, because now they'll be ramping up the Grand Bargain. We don't know yet if they will attempt to push it through in the lame-duck session, or whether they kick it down the road until after the next session of Congress. But it will happen, so be prepared to fight.
Because the whole thing is a fabrication meant to scare us into supporting it.