Sorry, Mitt: 47% of Americans aren't freeloaders
'No one group is getting a free ride' in the current system, a new report finds, once a person's full tax burden is included.
One-time presidential hopeful Mitt Romney stirred up a hornet's nest of opinion when he famously dismissed 47% of the country as a bunch of low-income freeloaders milking the tax system.
But a new report from the left-leaning Citizens for Tax Justice says it has debunked Romney's assertion, noting that he was looking only at federal tax rates and ignoring the total tax burden on low-income families.
"We've found that no one group is getting a free-ride and that the tax system overall is just barely progressive," the Citizens for Tax Justice said on Tuesday.
Romney and others who assert that nearly half the country gets a free ride are referring to 2009 estimates from the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, the group said. Those estimates showed that about 43.4% of Americans would have "zero or negative tax liability" that year, but they accounted for only federal personal income taxes, the CTJ said.
When state and local taxes are included -- which is what Americans must deal with on top of federal taxes -- the picture is quite different.
On that basis, the poorest 20% of Americans will be docked for 2.1% of total federal, state and local taxes, the CTJ found. But given that this segment of the population will receive only 3.3% of total income this year, their share of taxes isn't dramatically lower than their income, the group said.
But the very rich are paying more than their share of total income, the report found. With this year's changes to the tax code, the richest 1% of Americans will pay 24% of the country's total taxes but are slated to receive 21.9% of total income.
"In other words, the share of taxes paid by the richest Americans is slightly greater than their share of total income, but not dramatically so," the report notes. Nevertheless, that share is about 1% higher than it would have been if the government left the tax laws untouched, the study notes.
That finding may help support another tax study, which found that the rich are actually paying federal tax bills approaching 30-year highs, as MSN moneyNOW reported last month.
Still, given that the top 1% of American earners have annual cash income of $1.46 million, those in the lowest 20% -- earning an average $13,500 per year -- probably won't shed many tears on their behalf.
Really MSN - "left-leaning Citizens for Tax Justice", why don't you just state, "MSM is LEFT leaning and will SLANDER, MISLEAD, LIE or HIDE THE TRUTH."
Give me a break.....Mitt said NOTHING about freeloaders.. GET "YOUR" facts correct.
And yes almost HALF of America's citizen use or live off the Federal Tax system in some way.
"I want my free OBAMA phone" ...."I want my FREE OBAMA mortgage", this what LEFT leaning people were saying during the campaign....
that will herald the end of the republic."--Ben Franklin. No matter what percentage it actually is, the sad fact is they will probably want to keep things status quo...
One generation teaches the next to get on the govs. free hand outs. Instead of teaching their children and grandchildren how to develop a work ethic or how to interview for jobs, the elders teach how to sign up for SNAP cards and get section 8 housing.
Federal government dependency is the new slavery.
And the "Disabled" don't get me started! Romney was not going to convince these people no matter what. It was smart. It just was not smart to have it said out loud.
Obama- You have to vote him in to see who he is.
Actually the term freeloaders is so misleading. The 47% are actually ECONOMIC HOSTAGES.
The democommunist party believes in control of the populus for votes and will provide them with crumbs while the democommunists hold the loaf of bread.
This is a ridiculous study - their methodology isn't presented, but I'm willing to bet they included Social Security and medicare taxes, which aren't really taxes at all. Ask anyone and they will say "I paid into Social security -therefore it's mine and I am entitled to it". That doesn't really constitute a "TAX" it's really more like a mandatory savings account. A tax is when the money is taken from you and given to someone else or used for a common good (or not) project -FDA, FBI, Army -schools etc.
If you don't (and I don't) count Social Security as part of the "tax burden" then they (47%) literally pay nothing.
Oh - by the way very few 1% earners make $1.46 million annually - the numbers are skewed due to the Hundreds of millions the Zuckerbergs and Buffets make -most 1% are in the $500,000 range. Just sayin'
Typical left leaning study to only look at half of the equation. Great the poor pay 2.1% of total federal, state and local taxes. What they are forgetting to add to the other end of the calculation is how much they take from the system.
So they pay 2.1% in taxes but most get some or all of the following:
-"Free" (i.e. paid for by taxpayers) or subsidized food (food stamps, WIC, etc)
-I'm guessing this isn't taken into account but it might be. I am guessing they just show $0 liability to the IRS but some actually get a refund that exceeds what they paid in because they qualify for so many credits.
-"Free" (i.e. paid for by taxpayers) grants and need based scholarships for college.
-"Free" (i.e. paid for by taxpayers) or subsidized child care. I'll never forget the year my daycare manager handed me my tax form and said, "Woah, that's a lot." Yeah it is but that is what happens when you are the only one paying full price!!! (No, we are not rich but we are above the level for getting assistance and most people above that line rely on family or friends rather than daycare. We don't have family and are new to the area so no such luxury.)
-"Free" (i.e. paid for by taxpayers) health care
Lets face it. I could hit a character limit on this post long before I run out of "freebies" or subsidized benefits that the poor and lower middle class receive. By the time you factor in the benefits that they receive, it is WAAAAAAAAAY beyond the 2.1% they pay into the system. Which means yes, they are freeloaders. Actually, they are making money from the system so they are worse than freeloaders.
Meanwhile, the rich pay 24% in taxes and get $0 in return. They pay full price for everything as does the middle and upper portions of the middle class. Their kids don't get need based scholarships or grants even if their grades and ACT scores are much better. I know my parents weren't rich by any stretch but they did make more than that magic line so no grants and no need based scholarships. Just loans and cash.
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