The Congressional Progressive Caucus’s Department of Defense Priorities Are Popular With Voters

The Justice Collaborative Institute & Data for Progress

Executive Summary

  • When voters are provided two options regarding cutting or maintaining current levels of defense spending and provided arguments for and against, they support a ten percent decrease by a 14 percentage point margin.
  •  If defense spending was decreased by ten percent, healthcare (40 percent) and responding to the coronavirus pandemic (37) were the most commonly preferred new destinations for these funds.
  • All five progressive proposals regarding defense policy enjoyed net positive levels of support. For example, withdrawing United States troops from Afghanistan was supported by a 36 percentage point margin among all voters.

Voters support progressive priorities when it comes to defense spending. In two July surveys, Data for Progress in collaboration with tested attitudes among voters about progressive proposals aimed at the United States Department of Defense. We found that, among all voters, reallocating ten percent of the defense budget towards priorities such as the pandemic response, controlling healthcare costs, and reducing poverty is supported by a 14-percentage-point margin. If the defense budget was reduced by ten percent, healthcare (40 percent) and the coronavirus response (37 percent) are the most preferred destinations for the money to be reallocated towards. Five progressive proposals regarding the Defense Department — trimming the budget by ten points, withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, halting the transfer of military weapons to police departments, and ending the “unfunded priorities” list, and reform the 1807 Insurrection Act — all enjoy net positive levels of support from voters.

The Congressional Progressive Caucus’s Department of Defense Priorities Are Popular With Voters
The Congressional Progressive Caucus’s Department of Defense Priorities Are Popular With Voters