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SUSANNAH TAHK, University of Wisconsin, Madison

  • When: February 24, 2016
  • Where: ABF Woods Conference Room, 750 N. Lake Shore Drive, 4th Floor, Lakeside, Chicago IL 60611

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"Tax-Embedded Programs and Public Opinion"

Throughout the last quarter century, the federal government has been increasing its use of the tax code to achieve social-policy goals. Existing scholarship has argued that this development may have profound consequences for the politics of public policy. For instance, individuals who receive potentially-less-visible tax-embedded benefits may be less likely than individuals who receive direct subsidies to perceive the tax system as fair and to support various forms of redistribution. This paper assess experimentally some of the implications that tax embedding may have for the politics of public policy. Using a survey experiment, the paper explores the relationship between priming individuals about certain government programs and their views on redistributive policy, and probes relative preferences for direct-spending and tax-embedded programs.

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