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September 20, 2011

AP Fact Checks Obama; Finds The Rich Already Pay Much More, and Pay a Higher Rate In Taxes, Too

It should be noted that even if everyone paid the same flat-rate in taxes, the rich would pay more. Obviously-- they have more money. If everyone was taxed at 23% flat, then a poor man making $20,000 per year would pay $4600 in taxes (assuming he didn't get breaks and credits to reduce this, which he almost certainly would) and a rich man making $2,000,000 per year would pay $460,000.

That's more, isn't it? That seems like a great deal more to me.

But it is urged that the tax rate also be progressive, such that the rich also pay a higher effective rate on their earnings than the poor.

Obama alleges that by this measure, the rich aren't paying their fair share, that even though they may be paying more in absolute dollars than, say, a secretary, they are paying a lower effective rate of taxation, and that's not fair.

Is that fair? I don't know, once you're kicking more than a hundred thousand per year to Uncle Sam I'm not having an easy time saying you're a free rider.

But even taking Obama's goal as a worthy one, does he have the facts of the matter right?

No, of course not, and he's so far off the mark that even AP feels obligated to note this.

On average, the wealthiest people in America pay a lot more taxes than the middle class or the poor, according to private and government data. They pay at a higher rate, and as a group, they contribute a much larger share of the overall taxes collected by the federal government.

The 10% of households with the highest incomes pay more than half of all federal taxes. They pay more than 70% of federal income taxes, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

...

This year, households making more than $1 million will pay an average 29.1% of their income in federal taxes, including income taxes, payroll taxes and other taxes, according to the Tax Policy Center, a Washington think tank.

Households making between $50,000 and $75,000 will pay an average of 15% of their income in federal taxes.

Lower-income households will pay less. For example, households making between $40,000 and $50,000 will pay an average of 12.5% of their income in federal taxes. Households making between $20,000 and $30,000 will pay 5.7%.

So, Obama commits a foul during the annual Andover-Deerfield debate by making an false factual claim.

That should really eat at David Brooks, because apparently Prep School Grace is the only thing that matters.


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posted by Ace at 04:18 PM

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