Poll shows Dean, Gephardt tax plans not favored in Iowa


DES MOINES - On the issue of tax cuts, a Tribune Newspapers poll shows that the two leading candidates in Iowa are out of sync with half of the Democrats who plan to attend the state's precinct caucuses Jan. 19.

Howard Dean, who holds a narrow lead in the Tribune poll, and Rep. Richard A. Gephardt of Missouri, who is in second place, favor the repeal of all of President Bush's tax cuts to fund universal health care and balance the budget.

But the poll shows that only 40 percent of likely caucus participants favor such an approach, while 50 percent would prefer an approach that would repeal tax cuts for wealthy families. Ten percent are unsure or don't think any of the cuts should be repealed.

Last week, Dean's campaign said he plans to release details of a middle-class tax relief proposal. The Tribune's poll shows that a slim majority of Dean's supporters, 55 percent, prefer his original approach to repeal all of Bush's tax cuts, including those to the middle class.

But even among likely caucus participants who identify themselves as liberal, the poll shows that a slim majority, 53 percent, want to see tax cuts affecting only wealthy families repealed.

The majority of those supporting Gephardt, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts and Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina prefer a nominee who would only repeal tax cuts for wealthy families.

The Chicago Tribune is a Tribune Publishing newspaper.

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