Citizens Willingness to Support New Taxes for COVID-19 Measures and the Role of Trust


Lachapelle et al. (2021)

Are Canadians willing to contribute, through paying a new tax, to the costs of the COVID-19 pandemic?

Abstract The COVID-19 public health pandemic has seen governments spend trillions of dollars to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus as well as to soften the economic blow from the shutting down of national economies. Subsequent budget shortfalls raise the question of how governments will pay for the direct and indirect costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. In this article, we study the public’s willingness to contribute through paying a new tax, with a focus on Canada. We find that both generalized social and political trust are associated with a greater willingness to support a COVID-related tax and that generalized social trust, in particular, attenuates the negative effect of an experimentally manipulated, specified level of tax burden on policy support. These findings entail important implications for the public opinion and tax policies literature, as well as for policy makers.

The paper can be found here (Pre-print).