The Pew Research Center has come out with its annual survey of policy priorities and it shows there is a steady decline of interest over reducing the deficit, and it changes across party lines. The study was conducted Jan. 15-19, among 1,504 adults, and finds that the economy is the top priority of the public.

“In the current survey, majorities of Republicans (80 percent) and independents (66 percent) continue to say reducing the budget deficit should be a top priority for the president and Congress,” the survey illustrated. “However, just 49 percent of Democrats view this as a top priority, the lowest percentage since Obama took office. A year ago, 67 percent of Democrats rated cutting the deficit as a top policy goal.”

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Also noted in the study is that the public views the Democratic Party more favorably than the Republican Party on a range of traits but is split on policy issues.

“By a 20-point margin, the public sees Democrats (52 percent) as being more concerned than Republicans (32 percent) with the needs of people like themselves,” it revealed. However, the “Republicans’ biggest advantage comes on the issue of the federal budget deficit. By a margin of 45 percent-35 percent, more say the Republican Party could do a better job of dealing with the deficit.”

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