The current of protest is growing in the heart of the American left, among a youth marked by the financial crisis and university debt.
At one year of the American presidential election, he blows a strong wind of socialism … among American Democrats, especially young people. This is apparent from a comprehensive survey of 1,700 Americans, published in September by the libertarian think tank Cato Institute. If the majority remains loyal to free enterprise and capitalism, the current of protest is powerful in the American left. Thus, Democrats have a more favorable view of socialism (64%), term until then very pejorative and assimilated to communism, than capitalism (45%). This shift, largely caused by Donald Trump's mandate, remains a minority, with six out of ten Americans positive view of capitalism and negative of socialism. Similarly, 82% of Americans believe that people should be allowed to become billionaires and three quarters do not think it is "immoral". However, 54% of Democrats believe that billionaires are a threat to democracy. Even though seven out of ten Americans say they have more admiration than resentment for billionaires.
To the question "must wealth be redistributed from the rich to the poor? The answer is negative at 62%, but the Democrats are in favor at 58%.
The poll comes as candidates from the left wing of the Democratic Party, Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, multiply attacks on billionaires and tax proposals, including the unprecedented introduction of a wealth tax. There are also proposals to dismantle the digital giants and ban private health insurance.
Of the measures applicable, 61% of Americans support the idea of raising taxes for households earning over $ 200,000 (180,000 euros) a year, 53% favor a marginal tax rate of 70% over $ 10 million.
On the other hand, to the question "must wealth be redistributed from the rich to the poor? The answer is negative at 62%, but the Democrats are in favor at 58%. Interestingly, independents who are likely to switch an election approve higher income taxes but are unfavorable to that on wealth. Not surprisingly, Republican voters are opposed to the three measures. Belief in the welfare state remains weak. More than seven out of ten Americans believe that the government's fight against poverty has been ineffective and that it should focus on eliminating its causes rather than increasing the welfare state.