Despite his commanding lead at this early stage among GOP candidates, the 2016 nomination is anyone’s game.
It is risky to put too much stock in the latest findings, including the NBC/Wall Street Journal poll released Sunday. That’s because the national telephone survey of 1,000 adults included only 252 registered voters who said they would vote for a Republican, and the poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 6.17 points.
There are plenty of downsides to Trump’s candidacy – including his threat to mount a third-party campaign if he is denied the Republican nomination -- which has alarmed GOP leaders who are looking down the road to the general election.
Trump has the highest negatives of any of the top tier candidates, and a majority of Americans in the survey said they think Trump is hurting the Republican Party. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of Democrats interviewed said Trump was harming his party’s image, but nearly half the Republicans interviewed said the same thing.
Political analyst Nate Silver notes that Trump ranks just 13th in overall favorability among Republicans in a series of national polls. “If you’re going to imply that a candidate is popular based on their receiving 20 percent of the vote, you ought to consider what the other 80 percent thinks about him,” Silver wrote recently in his FiveThirtyEight blog. “Most Republicans who don’t plan to vote for Trump are skeptical of him instead.”
What’s more, about three in four Latinos said they have a negative view of Trump – and that more than half consider his comments about lawless Mexican immigrants to be racist or highly inappropriate, according to a separate NBC News/Wall Street Journal Telemundo poll released today.
The survey of 250 Hispanic-American voters revealed widespread hostility towards Trump, with only 13 percent saying they have a positive view of him.
The Republican presidential frontrunner has said repeatedly that many Latino voters “love” and support him, and that he would win the majority of that vote if he ends up as his party’s nominee. There is little evidence in this poll to suggest Trump is dealing with reality.
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Health care spending in the U.S. will grow at an average annual rate of 5.5 percent from 2017 through 2026, according to new estimates published in Health Affairs by the Office of the Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
The projections mean that health care spending would rise as a share of the economy from 17.9 percent in 2016 to 19.7 percent in 2026.
Margot Sanger-Katz and Jim Tankersley in The New York Times: “The deal struck by Democrats and Republicans on Monday to end a brief government shutdown contains $31 billion in tax cuts, including a temporary delay in implementing three health care-related taxes.”
“Those delays, which enjoy varying degrees of bipartisan support, are not offset by any spending cuts or tax increases, and thus will add to a federal budget deficit that is already projected to increase rapidly as last year’s mammoth new tax law takes effect.”
Congress passed a law in 2015 requiring the IRS to use private debt collection agencies to pursue “inactive tax receivables,” but the financial results are not encouraging so far, according to a new taxpayer advocate report out Wednesday.
In fiscal year 2017, the IRS received $6.7 million from taxpayers whose debts were assigned to private collection agencies, but the agencies were paid $20 million – “three times the amount collected,” the report helpfully points out.
Goldman Sachs economists see the tax bill adding 0.3 percentage points to GDP growth in 2018 and 2019 while JP Morgan forecasts a similar gain of 0.3 percentage points next year and 0.2 percentage points the year after.
Goldman’s analysts add that federal spending, which is likely to grow more quickly next year than it has recently, will bring the total fiscal boost to around 0.6 percentage points for 2018 and 0.4 percentage points in 2019.
Both banks see deficits likely rising above $1 trillion, or about 5 percent of GDP, in 2019.