Americans would rather pay more taxes to fund infrastructure over national defense or health care

Updated Apr 11, 2014

bridge constructionIf given the choice, more Americans would be willing to designate taxes to infrastructure than to national defense or health care, according to the results of an April 2014 Reason-Rupe poll.

Released last week, the survey results feature telephone responses from 1,003 adults throughout the U.S. who answered questions on a variety of topics, including politics, taxes, video games, sports and more.

When inquiring about taxes, the survey asked respondents: “If you could designate your tax money to go to specific federal or state government programs, what would be your top one or two choices?” According to the results, 10 percent of respondents replied “infrastructure.”

This response was only outnumbered by “education” (29 percent), “help for the poor” (13 percent) and “other” (29 percent).

“Infrastructure” received more responses than “national defense” (7 percent), “health care” (7 percent), “health children/youth” (4 percent) and “helping seniors” (3 percent).

A separate study done last year found that a majority of Americans support an increase to the fuel tax to fund infrastructure. When presented with a 10-cent fuel tax increase “with revenues spent to maintain streets, roads and highways,” an impressive 67 percent of Americans said they strongly or somewhat supported the tax option.

A report from October of last year advocating for a variable rate gas tax that increase with inflation found that properly funding transportation and infrastructure through the fuel tax would cost Americans just under $5 more per month.


Editor’s Note: Amanda Bayhi is the online managing editor for sister sites Better Roads and Aggregates Manager.