Benefits and Costs of a Return-Free Filing Tax System in the United States

  • Various efforts have been proposed over the years to reduce taxpayer compliance burdens ranging from simplification of the tax system generally to specific changes to the way tax returns are prepared, filed, and processed. Among the proposals that policymakers have considered are ways for taxpayers to satisfy their tax obligations without having to file a tax return: a return-free filing system. Center Forward engaged PwC to prepare a report to assist in assessing the benefits and costs of a return-free tax filing system for the United States. View the report here.

Bipartisan Landscape Polling – October 2021

  • Center Forward conducted a national survey n=2,672 with likely 2022 voters, 95% confidence level and +/-1.9%
  • Our findings reveal that the economy, and particularly inflation, has emerged as a uniquely salient concern among voters, who are feeling higher costs in their pocketbooks and supply chain bottlenecks at the store. More than two thirds (68%) of voters believe that inflation won’t subside unless the government becomes more fiscally responsible.
  • Simultaneously, a similar share (65%) of voters agree that the economy won’t be fixed until we can manage to get the coronavirus pandemic under control, highlighting the nuanced lens that voters view the economy through.
  • MEMO

US Tax System – September 2021

  • Center Forward conducted a national survey on perceptions of the IRS, the challenges people face in tax preparation, and openness to new laws that would change the way they file their taxes.
  • We surveyed n=1000 national registered voters nationwide online, 95% confidence interval +/- 3.1%
  • Voters expressed satisfaction with the IRS’s core job functions (distributing COVID payments, processing tax returns and getting tax refunds out quickly)
  • We found that voters are skeptical of having the federal government both be the tax collector and tax return preparer.

WA-10 Polling – September 2021

  • Center Forward conducted district specific research on the value of bipartisanship and priority of issues for voters.
  • Survey was conducted by telephone (landline and cell) with 400 likely voters, 95% confidence level and +/-5% margin of error.
  • Most voters in the district support fiscal responsibility and want Congress to take a bipartisan approach.
  • More than six in ten (62%) voters say that ensuring that every person who is a resident of the United States gets access to affordable health care that is equitable and transparent is a top priority. 
  • Voters in the district identify the coronavirus (38%) and the economy/jobs (30%) as the most important issues that need to be addressed, they want policymakers to take a fiscally responsible approach. 
  • The majority (52%) believe that the federal government needs to spend responsibly to keep the national debt and inflation in check versus 44% who believe that the federal government should spend as much as it takes to help the post-pandemic economic recovery.

NJ-11 Polling – September 2021

  • Center Forward conducted district specific research on the value of bipartisanship and priority of issues for voters.
  • Survey was conducted by telephone (landline and cell) with 400 likely voters, 95% confidence level and +/-5% margin of error.
  • Approximately two thirds of voters (64%) believe that we need a bipartisan approach where Representatives can work across the aisle to deliver results for the people who elected them. 
  • Voters in the district prioritize federal spending on investments to reform health care (36%), followed closely by rebuilding roads, bridges, and other traditional infrastructure (34%). 
  • Eighty five percent (85%) agree that health legislation that Congress pursues should make patient affordability the number one goal.

NJ-5 Polling – August 2021

  • Center Forward conducted district specific research on the value of bipartisanship and priority of issues for voters.
  • Survey was conducted by telephone (landline and cell) with 400 likely voters, 95% confidence level and +/-5% margin of error.
  • While voters identify the coronavirus and the economy/jobs as the most important issues that need to be addressed, they want policymakers to take a fiscally responsible approach. 
  • Nearly sixty percent (59%) believe that the federal government needs to spend responsibly to keep the national debt and inflation in check versus 37% who believe that the federal government should spend as much as it takes to help the post-pandemic economic recovery. 
  • As policymakers in Washington consider changes to Medicare, voters in NJ-5 reaffirm their support for this successful government program. The survey shows that voters don’t want to remove patient protections in Medicare that prevent access, restrictions, and discrimination. 

FL-7 Polling – August 2021

  • Center Forward conducted district specific research on the value of bipartisanship and priority of issues for voters.
  • Survey was conducted by telephone (landline and cell) with 400 likely voters, 95% confidence level and +/-5% margin of error.
  • While voters identify the coronavirus and the economy/jobs are the most important issues that need to be addressed, they want policymakers to take a fiscally responsible approach. 
  • More than sixty percent (61%) believe that the federal government needs to spend responsibly to keep the national debt and inflation in check versus 36% who believe that the federal government should spend as much as it takes to help the post-pandemic economic recovery. 
  • 93% support ensuring more predictability in health care so that people know how much they will pay for things like prescription drugs every month.

Immigration Poll – March 2021

  • Center Forward conducted national research on providing a path to citizenship for DACA recipients, farmworkers, and other groups of immigrants.
  • Survey spoke with 800 national likely 2022 voters via telephone (landline + cellphone + text-to-web), 95% margin of error +/-3.5%
  • We found that Democrats, Independents, and many Republicans support creating a path to citizenship for Dreamers, legal immigrants who escaped war or natural disaster and can’t safely return, and essential workers.

Energy Poll – April 2021

  • Center Forward conducted national research on the transition to a cleaner, carbon-free energy economy. This research also explored Democratic positioning on renewable energy, climate change, and the transition away from fossil fuels.
  • Survey was done online, N=1000 national registered voters, 95% confidence interval +/-3.1%
  • We found that voters want to transition to net-zero carbon in the next few decades. They are also cost sensitive about how we make that transition. They support bringing our energy production home and creating good-paying jobs in renewable energy.

Energy Poll – July 2020

  • Center Forward conducted a poll in swing Congressional districts with large energy production to help understand how officials are perceived when they talk about energy in these energy-rich places.
  • Survey was done online, N=1800 (300 + 6 Congressional districts), overall 95% confidence interval +/- 2.3%
  • We found that voters want to hear elected officials in these districts talk about a smooth transition that will protect their area’s economy and get us to net-zero carbon pollution.

Energy Infrastructure Poll – October 2020

  • Center Forward conducted a poll on energy infrastructure to gauge public openness to investing in energy infrastructure (large-scale wind + solar, electric grid upgrades, etc.).
  • Survey was done online, N=1000 national registered voters, 95% confidence interval +/-3.1%
  • We found that voters want to invest in our infrastructure to make our energy cheaper, cleaner, and safer.