The wealthy may be just as politically polarized as the rest of the country. But when it comes to the deficit, they are largely united.
A new study from scholars at Northwestern and Vanderbilt universities asked members of the top one percent of earners to list the "very important problems" facing the nation. Fully 87 percent listed the deficit, making it the most common response.
(Read more: Millionaires Say They Are Better Off Than in 2007)
When not prompted with a list, one-third said deficits or excessive government spending were the most pressing national problems. Many also spoke of "government overspending" during the survey.
The authors of the study – Benjamin I. Page and Jason Seawright of Northwestern University,and Larry M. Bartels of Vanderbilt University – said the wealthy's deficit fixation stands in stark contrast to the rest of the country, where only seven percent of the population cite deficits as the top problem. For the broader population, jobs and the economy tend to rank much higher.
The wealthy are also far more likely to cite government spending cuts as the solution to the government's debt issues.
The question is why the rich care about deficits more, and whether this matters for policy.