June 15, 2001

Poll Finds Broad Support for Education Tax Credits

On May 21-23, McLaughlin and Associates conducted a nationwide poll of 1,000 likely voters, consisting of a broad array of parties and interest groups. Surprisingly, the study revealed that the vast majority of Americans, both liberals and conservatives, favor education tax credits.

"This poll demonstrates that Americans understand the difference between vouchers and education tax credits," says Caleb Kershner, Manager of Federal Policy and Research at Home School Legal Defense Association. "A voucher comes with strings attached and gives government power and oversight. Education tax credits empower parents, allowing them to spend more of their own money on their child's education. Americans clearly want more parental control and less government in education."

"We have seen mixed results with education tax credits at the state level," says Doug Domenech, Director of the National Center for Home Education. "There has been a growing trend to force those who take education tax credits to also comply with other state education regulations. However we have not seen any evidence that this would occur with a federal education tax credit." HSLDA will be watchful as this procedure moves forward.

Key survey results:

Two-thirds of the voters agreed, and only 28.8 % disagreed, that education tax credits give parents more opportunities to choose which school their children attend.

Seven of ten voters approved of providing parents with a $2,000 per child education tax credit to be used for computers, books, tutoring, or any other educational expense, including tuition. This was the most popular option among likely voters, cutting across ideology, party, income, and race. Representative Eric Cantor (VA) has a bill before Congress that will provide a $2,000 per child tax credit.

Nearly two-thirds of the voters approved of providing parents with a $1,000 education tax credit per child, to be used for computers, books, tutoring, or any educational expense other than tuition. Senator George Allen (R-VA) has introduced a bill that would give a $1,000 tax credit for educational expenses other than tuition.

Other proposed questions that received very favorable responses included education tax credits for low-income families and education tax credits for corporations who contribute to qualified student organizations.

To read more about this study, visit http://www.mclaughlinonline.com/newspoll/results/010613edu.htm.