Stop the Sequester (Wait ... What's a Sequester?)

BUDGET

The major budget cuts looming on March 1 are a bad idea, whether you know much about them or not.

That's one takeaway from a new poll by the Pew Research Center and USA Today on issues that are likely to dominate the political landscape this year.

By a 9 point margin (49 to 40 percent), those polled favored finding a way around the $85 billion in spending cuts scheduled for military and most domestic programs - known in Washington as the " sequester." There was little difference between the response of those under age 50 and those 50 and older.

Asked how much they've heard about the sequester, 27 percent said "a lot"; 43 percent said "a little"; and 29 percent said "nothing at all."

Here, though, there was a clear difference by age:

Those who have heard "a lot" about the sequester?

  • Under age 50: 19 percent
  • 50 and older: 37 percent.

Have heard "nothing at all"?

  • Under age 50: 35 percent
  • 50 and older: 21 percent.

The poll also asked how Congress and President Obama should reduce the budget deficit in the coming months.

  • Spending cuts only: 19 percent
  • Tax increases only: 3 percent
  • A combination: 76 percent

There was no significant difference between those under 50 (less informed about the sequester) and 50 and older (more informed about the sequester) .

Common sense, I'm guessing, cuts across all age lines.

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