From a survey of holiday spending in the state:

Pollster Bruce Merrill reports that 18 percent of Arizona Republicans he questioned earlier this month say they intend to spend more on holiday gifts this year than they did a year ago.

By contrast, Merrill said Tuesday that only 10 percent of Democrats — and 11 percent of independents — are planning to increase holiday spending.

Okay, that’s interesting. I wonder what explains the difference?

One possibility, said Merrill, is related to the fact that the Democrats are taking control of Congress.

“There’s a lot of discussion coming out of Washington that a lot of the tax cuts are not going to hold on higher socio-economic people,” he said.


“So maybe Republicans are figuring we’d better spend our money while we’ve got it,” he said.

That just doesn’t strike me as a plausible explanation. If foreward-thinking wealthy Rs are anticipating losing their tax cuts, surely they’re forward-thinking enough to understand that the IRS doesn’t care that they spent the money on Christmas gifts?

I would think that one of these are more reasonable mechanisms:

  • If you really want to go the tax-cut route, did Rs receive greater proportions of the cuts this year, and as a result are more inclined to increase their spending?
  • Rs feel better about the economy?
  • Rs are disproportionately into the super-duper expensive model of the PS3?

To really tell the story, we ought to know if the spending difference is really uncharacteristic. This story from ABC news discusses 2005 holiday spending, but has no breakdown by political party.

Pit of my stomach



So this is what the ownership society feels like.

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