If you're a Democrat who makes less than $30,000 a year, this is a great time to be an American. It's tax time!
A survey of American adults by the Pew Research Center for People and the Press found that more than a third of us actually like or even love doing our taxes. Of the 29 percent who like filling out IRS forms and 5 percent who love it, 29 percent say they enjoy this time of year because they will get a refund.
But another 17 percent of those cheerful souls don't mind tax time because they consider themselves good at the requisite record-keeping and paperwork. Six percent say the self-audit that comes with filing taxes gives them a timely overview of their financial situation.
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But tax time's favorability rating also skews toward Democrats: 40 percent have a positive attitude about filing, with 46 percent saying it isn't so great. Democrats, in fact, are the only economic or political grouping who dislike it less than half the time.
Of Republicans, 60 percent dislike or hate doing their taxes. Independents, perhaps predictably, like it even less, with 62 percent in the hate/dislike category.
Negative feelings about filing increase with annual household income. Families pulling in more than $75,000 dislike doing their taxes at a rate higher than independents, at 63 percent. Those making $30,000 to $75,000 are 4 percentage points less likely to hate it, while only half of those making less than $30,000 said they object.
On the other hand, the more money you make, the more likely it is that you view cheating on your taxes as unethical. While 71 percent of Americans view failing to report income as immoral, the morality is on a sliding scale: Those making more than $30,000 demand scrupulous reporting more consistently than those making less; only 66 percent of the under $30,000s agree. Gender is also starkly defining on this score. Some 74 percent of women think under-reporting is wrong; 67 percent of men do.
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Overall, some 56 percent of the 1,003 American adults in the poll, which was conducted over April 5 to 7, said they aren't so fond of completing their returns. Need we mention why not? For the record, then: Nearly a third (31 percent) said filing taxes requires too much paperwork, and roughly a quarter (24 percent) said it's too time-consuming—a distinction we, plodding through our forms as the deadline approaches, view as a distinction without a difference.
It's the 12 percent who don't like how the government uses their money that sound like they could provide a little diversion from our drudgery.