High Income Earners, Coalition Voters Among Those Backing Stage 3 Redesign

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About half of Australia’s highest income earners on more than $200,000 back a redesign of the Stage 3 tax cuts, according to new research from the Australia Institute.

The survey shows nearly two-thirds of voters think it is more important to adapt policy to changing economic circumstances, even if it means breaking an election promise.

Just 16 per cent of people surveyed want the tax cuts kept in their current form, including a quarter of Coalition voters and a third of those on the highest incomes.

Key Points:

The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,017 Australians between January 23 and 29 January 2024. The government announced its changes to the tax cuts on January 25.

  • Nearly six in ten Australians (58%) prefer for the Stage 3 tax cuts to be restructured so middle and low-income earners receive more
  • Restructuring the Stage 3 tax cuts is the most preferred option across all age groups, genders, voting intentions, and large states
  • One in six (16%) Australians would rather keep the Stage 3 tax cuts in their current form than scrap or restructure them. This includes only one in four (25%) Coalition voters and one in three (32%) people earning over $200,000
  • Two in three (65%) Australians believe that adapting economic policy to suit changing circumstances is more important, even if that means breaking an election promise
    • Majority support was observed across all age groups, genders, voting intentions, and large states

“The Morrison-era Stage 3 tax cuts are bad economic policy, and even voters on the highest incomes recognise that,” said Dr Richard Denniss, Executive Director of the Australia Institute.

“There is strong support for the Albanese government’s decision to restructure these cuts in the face of vastly different economic circumstances than when they were legislated.

“Our research demonstrates that restructuring Stage 3 is the preferred option among voters – regardless of how much they earn or who they vote for in an election.

“When Stage 3 was legislated in 2019, no one would have predicted a global pandemic, rising inflation and a cost-of-living crisis. Voters understand that things change.

“Two-thirds of people think it is more important to adapt the economic policy to suit the changing circumstances, even if that means going against an election promise.

“Australians need the government of the day to respond to our current economic realities. That is what the government has done.”

Dr Richard Denniss is appearing at the National Press Club TODAY, Wednesday 31 January, with Allegra Spender MP for ‘Australia’s Tax Dilemma: The case for real reform.’

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