Wednesday, February 10, 2016

NJ voters think Christie's cuts will hurt the middle class, the poor, and teachers

Gov. Chris Christie has gotten national attention for his aggressive plan to deal with New Jersey's budget deficit. Christie refuses to raise taxes, instead proposing cuts in programs, staffing, and employee compensation. His sweeping ideas have brought praise from conservatives, including being called “New Jersey's Ronald Reagan” by the the Wall Street Journal.

NJ voters think Christie's cuts will hurt the middle class, the poor, and teachers

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Gov. Chris Christie has gotten national attention for his aggressive plan to deal with New Jersey's budget deficit. Christie refuses to raise taxes, instead proposing cuts in programs, staffing, and employee compensation. His sweeping ideas have brought praise from conservatives, including being called “New Jersey's Ronald Reagan” by the the Wall Street Journal.

But a new poll by Monmouth University found that New Jersey voters have a lot of questions about Christie's approach.

Twenty-two percent of those polled said they are satisfied with the governor's budget plan. Another 32 percent said they can live with it.

But 44 percent said they're dissatisfied.

Those numbers aren't dramatically bad for Christie, since a majority of respondents said they can deal with the cuts. The more telling question, though, may be about the fairness of the budget proposal. The poll found that only 25 percent of the public thinks the cuts are evenly distributed.

So who do people think will suffer? Well, it's not the rich.

Among those who believe some groups will suffer unfairly, 39 percent said it's the middle class, 29 percent the poor and 30 percent teachers.

These numbers are important because it gives us a sense of how people will think about the impact of the cuts. The real pain isn't being felt yet. When NJ residents find out that the number of teachers in their school district is being cut, they may feel unfairly hurt by Christie's budget.New blog post goes here! (Don't past over the Howl boilerplate.)

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Every year, city government spends slightly more than $4 billion. Where does all that money come from? More importantly, where does it go? Are we getting the most bang for our tax buck? “It's Our Money” is a joint project between Philadelphia Daily News and WHYY, funded by the William Penn Foundation, designed to answer these questions.

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