POLL-Americans demand climate action (as long as it doesn't cost much)

(Reuters News, 26 Jun 2019) Democrats' plans to ditch fossil fuels for clean energy quickly lose support when voters sense they come with a personal price tag, survey shows.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans, including a majority of Republicans, want the United States to take "aggressive" action to combat climate change - but only a third would support an extra tax of $100 a year to help, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released Wednesday.

The results underscore a crucial challenge for Democrats seeking to unseat President Donald Trump in next year's election. Many will have to balance their calls for strict environmental regulation with a convincing argument for why the changes are good for taxpayers and the economy.

"There isn't any doubt climate change has emerged as an important issue in this election," said G. Terry Madonna, Director of the Center for Politics and Public Affairs at Franklin and Marshall College. "But when it comes to how you will pay for it, that's what can make a big difference."

Nearly all the Democratic contenders for the White House have supported the goal of quickly eliminating U.S. carbon emissions by replacing fossil fuels with clean energy. Such ideas aim to tap into a growing sense of urgency about global warming on both sides of the political divide.

Their plans aren't cheap. Front-runner Joe Biden, for example, pitched a $1.7 trillion plan to zero-out emissions by 2050 that would be financed in part by repealing Trump's tax cuts. Elizabeth Warren, meanwhile, pitched a $2 trillion plan to be paid for through higher corporate taxes.

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Reuters News, 26 Jun 2019: POLL-Americans demand climate action (as long as it doesn't cost much)