NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Support For Personal Retirement Accounts Holds Strong

August 1, 2002

Even after the recent string of corporate scandals, public support for Social Security reform that includes personal retirement accounts (PRAs) remains high. According to a recent Cato Institute-Zogby poll, 68 percent of likely voters support PRAs, while only 39.1 percent oppose them. In addition:

  • Support cut across ideological and demographic lines, reaching 56 percent among Democrats and 63.6 percent among union members, and 58.2 percent among blacks and 71.9 percent among Hispanics.
  • Although younger workers favored PRAs the most (82.8 percent), a clear majority in every age group also backed them.
  • The two most compelling reasons why people liked PRAs were individual control and the right to invest privately, with "higher retirement benefits" and inheritability also ranking.

Significantly, the survey was conducted July 8 to 12, 2002, two weeks after the WorldCom scandal broke and during the week that the Dow lost 694.97 points. Although market turmoil concerns people, they nonetheless would like to have control over their own personal retirement accounts.

Source: News Release, "New Cato-Zogby Poll Shows Two-thirds of Likely Voters Want to Invest in Personal Social Security Accounts" Cato Daily Comment, July 23, 2002, Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W. Washington D.C. 20001-5403 (202) 842-3490


Browse more articles on Tax and Spending Issues