National Poll Finds that Americans Strongly Support Expanding Charitable Deduction

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump Voters Agree that the Tax Code Should Incentivize Giving

(WASHINGTON, March 23, 2017) – New polling, commissioned by Independent Sector, finds that 75 percent of American voters want to expand the charitable deduction to taxpayers who do not itemize on their taxes.

The poll of 800 registered voters, conducted March 6-8 by TargetPoint, found that 78 percent of Hillary Clinton voters and 75 percent of Donald Trump voters favored the expanded deduction. These results are similar to 2016 polling done prior to the election that found strong support for the charitable deduction from democrats, republicans, and independents.

Currently, the charitable tax deduction is only available to American taxpayers who itemize on their taxes and those who itemize tend to have higher incomes. Independent Sector has been working with policymakers over the last year to push for a “universal” charitable deduction in order to incentivize more giving. Americans are generous but research has shown that people do give more when they are incentivized to do so. In 2015, Americans gave $370 billion to charitable organizations to fund high-quality arts; increase access to education and healthcare; create opportunities for escaping the cycle poverty; help military veterans; mentor youth; and protect for the natural world.

“Americans have had a unique and strong tradition in giving to their neighbors and communities,” said Daniel J. Cardinali, president and CEO of Independent Sector. “In fact, giving is one of the most important civic acts any individual can take to give voice to their passions, values, and commitments. It is more important than ever to ensure that within the context of tax reform, we find more ways to incentivize Americans to give more to improve their local communities and our country as a whole.”

With tax reform heating up in Washington, Independent Sector, its partner organizations, and members will be advocating strongly to strengthen and expand the charitable deduction among other priorities that impact the charitable community.

To learn more about this polling work and our efforts to expand the charitable deduction, visit


Independent Sector is the only national membership organization that brings together a diverse set of nonprofits, foundations, and corporations to advance the common good. Learn more at

Contact: Kristina Gawrgy Campbell,, 202-467-6144

Types: Press Release
Global Topics: Public Policy
Policy Issues: Charitable Deduction, Charitable Giving, Tax & Fiscal Policy