Payroll Tax Gives Obama Edge Over Republicans

Barack ObamaWhen the debate over the payroll tax extension returns in February, more Americans have confidence in President Barack Obama and Congressional Democrats than in Republicans.

Forty-one percent expressed confidence in Pres. Obama and the Democrats, compared with 34% who told pollsters they think Republicans will better tackle the issue, a Gallup poll shows.

This edge is what Pres. Obama and the Democrats bank on during the showdown against House Speaker John Boehner and the Republicans in the House over the extension. Without it, 160 million Americans would have faced a payroll tax increase on January 1.

Meanwhile, 15% say they have no confidence in either party to handle the debate.

On partisan lines, 87% of Democrats trust Pres. Obama and their party leaders, just as 82% of Republicans are confident about the Republicans in Congress about the extension of payroll tax cuts and unemployment benefits. Independents favor Pres. Obama and the Democrats with 35%, while 27% say Republicans.

In another poll, 32% of Americans told Gallup that Obama’s job performance was excellent or good. Only 12% describe the Republicans in Congress as good or excellent.

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