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Poll: Republican Party Mostly Wants To Help The Rich

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U.S. Capitol on Sept. 16, 2013, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) | AP
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Most Americans think the Republican Party is more interested in helping the wealthy than the poor or the middle class, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll.

The new poll found that 51 percent of Americans think Republicans are most interested in helping the rich, while 28 percent said they're most interested in helping the middle class. Another 7 percent said the GOP is most interested in helping the poor.

No surprise here: There is a partisan divide on the question. To Republicans, it's quite clear that Democrats serve the rich, while they battle on behalf of the middle class. Six in 10 Republicans said their party is most interested in helping the middle class, while only 1 in 10 Republicans said Democrats fight for the middle class. Four in 10 Republicans said the Democratic Party is working for the rich, and only 1 in 4 said the Democrats care most about the poor.

Democrats almost universally dubbed the GOP the party of the rich.

A 45 percent plurality of independents also saw Republicans as most interested in helping the wealthy, while only 28 percent said the middle class and 7 percent said the poor.

Indeed, for independents, both parties lean toward the interests of the rich. Thirty-two percent of independents said Democrats are most interested in helping the rich, 20 percent said the poor, and 20 percent said the middle class.

Americans overall were roughly evenly divided on what they think the Democratic Party is up to. Twenty-eight percent said the party works for the rich, 27 percent said the middle class, and 25 percent said the poor.

Fifty percent of Democrats see their own party as most interested in helping the middle class, though that puts the party at odds with what the rank and file think the government should be doing. Fifty-seven percent said the government should do the most to help the poor.

Both Republicans (66 percent) and independents (50 percent) said government should help the middle class.

But the majority of Americans said the government takes neither approach. Instead, 53 percent said the government does the most to help the rich, while only 19 percent said the poor, and just 8 percent said the middle class.

The HuffPost/YouGov poll was conducted Sept. 20-21 among 1,000 U.S. adults using a sample selected from YouGov's opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population. Factors considered include age, race, gender, education, employment, income, marital status, number of children, voter registration, time and location of Internet access, interest in politics, religion and church attendance.

The Huffington Post has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov's nationally representative opinion polling.

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