Undermining the flawed trope that "everyone hates the tax man," for those who have opinions on the competing tax plans put forth by this year's presidential candidates, Bernie Sanders' proposal is the hands-down favorite.
Beating out all other contenders from both major parties by double-digit margins, according to a new survey WalletHub/Survey Monkey published Monday, Sanders' plan was supported by 23 percent of respondents. In comparison, only 13 percent liked the plan of Hillary Clinton best, giving her a slight edge over the 12 percent who chose Donald Trump's plan. Taking the fourth and fifth spots respectively, Sen. Ted Cruz nabbed 8 percent support while Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) got 5 percent.
With the most progressive tax policy of any candidate, Sanders would dramatically increase taxes for the very wealthy and high-income earners (as well as moderate increases for the middle- and upper-middle classes) in order to pay for key planks of his social agenda including tuition-free public college, a Medicare for All healthcare program, massive infrastructure spending, and paid family leave for all workers.
According to recent analysis (pdf) by the Tax Policy Center, a joint project of the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution, an implemented Sanders' tax plan would generate more than $15 trillion in revenue over its first ten years.
Len Burman, director of the Tax Policy Center, told Bloomberg News that not only is the Sanders plan the most ambitious among the 2016 candidates, it is also the most detailed. Compared to Clinton's more "incremental" approach to taxation and social change, said Burman, "Bernie Sanders clearly wants to change things radically. There’s a very, very clear choice."
And, at least according to Monday's poll, it's a choice many are willing to make.