Essential Report

Measures to Return to Surplus

Apr 11, 2011

Q. In order to meet their commitment to return to surplus in 2012-13, which measures should the Government take?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Increase taxes for big corporations 63% 79% 51% 77%
Reduce tax breaks for high income earners 51% 57% 46% 67%
Cut “middle class welfare” such as the Baby Bonus, first home buyers grant and Family Tax Benefit payments 36% 33% 41% 39%
Reduce defence spending 32% 36% 26% 51%
Cut spending on unemployment and disability benefits 21% 15% 31% 11%
It does not need to return to surplus so quickly 38% 39% 36% 57%

Overall, the most favoured means of returning the budget to surplus were increasing taxes for big corporations (63%) and reducing tax breaks for high income earners (51%). Both these measures were strongly favoured by Labor and Greens voters.

Although support was less strong, these two measures were also the most preferred among Liberal/National voters.

Note, although 38% thought that the budget does not need to return to surplus so quickly, some of these respondents also agreed with some of the measures listed.

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