UNITED STATES: Most recent Progressive Change Campaign Committee pool results get discussed by basic income advocates and critics
The Progressive Change Campaign Committee has released the results of its latest poll on voters’ response to a set of progressive proposals. It is fully available online, and amongst 52 proposals, the minimum guaranteed income (basic income, or BI) scored around middle table, with 59% of responses in favour and 27% in opposition with around 10% neutral. This result may seem surprising in a conservative-leaning society such as the United States, and is probably connected with other related issues, such as the desire to end tax loopholes for corporations (74% in favour) or the expansion of Social Security Benefits (70% in favour).
The poll and its results have been discussed in specialized forums such as Reddit, in this case in a subreddit focused on Basic Income. Here, several basic income advocates and critics discuss its premise and implications. From the critics point of view, the polling methods were questionable, as was the adequacy of the question itself about minimum guaranteed income, which might have been leading. Some of these critics have written that polls like this shouldn’t be used to convince others about the benefits of BI.
However, strong arguments and evidence exist in defense of the polling method and its validity, clearly separating it from other so-called push-polls. Building from there, BI advocates reply, while accepting that some people might feel more inclined to accept closing tax loopholes for corporations than accepting BI head-on, this is still an impressive result for BI. Moreover, advocates highlight, other polling questions relevant to BI had high levels of approval, as mentioned above, e.g. closing tax loopholes and expanding Social Security, which can be intimately related to financing and implementing a future BI in the USA. It was also suggested that BI defenders and activists should actually study and be able to deploy these types of polls for their own purposes.
More information at:
Progressive Change Campaign Committee, “Progressive Change Institute releases big ideas pooling results“, Bold Progressives.org, 2015
Reddit, Subreddit on Basic Income, reddit.com, 2015