How Many Taxes Can a Tax Cutter Cut if a Tax Cutter Could Cut Taxes

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Longest title ever. Sorry.

At any rate, from the WaPo, the Tax Policy Center (a conglomeration of Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution) did a study of the McCain and Obama tax plans. Interesting results.

Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain are both proposing tax plans that would result in cuts for most American families. Obama's plan gives the biggest cuts to those who make the least, while McCain would give the largest cuts to the very wealthy.[emphasis added]
Not my words, not a partisan political campaign's ad, but the Tax Policy Center.
In the "Above $2.87 Million" income level (still below the "rich" level proposed by McCain)(/end snark), McCain proposes his largest cut of 4.4%, which equates to an extra $126,280 (on exactly $2.87 M...the graphic uses the avergage amount, which is nearly $270,000!). The Aston Martin Vantage costs $117,000. By the way.

This same income level is, true to his campaign speeches, a tax increase in Obama's proposal. That increases the taxes anywhere from about $300,000 to a little over $700,000.

Obama's biggest cuts are to the bottom 3 income levels listed: Up to $18,981; $18,982 - $37,595; and $37,596 - $66,354. As the graphic points out, 60% of all taxpayer are in those 3 income groups. Most of taxpaying Americans are in those 3 income groups. McCain's plan saves people near the poverty level a whopping $20, while giving the top 0.1% (not 1%...but POINT 1%) 2 or 3 extra Aston Martins. Obama's plan gives these same near-poverty earners over $500 while placing a $700,000 burden on the top 0.1%.

What I don't like about the graphic is that it lists "avergae cut." Reading that, the graphic is skewed towards McCain's cut, who gives everyone a cut, whereas Obama's average is thrown by his massive increase to be extremely-wealthy.

I really suck at math, but if you look at just the taxes that concern the bulk of taxpayers (the 60%), Obama's plan cuts an average of 3.8% and McCain cuts an average of 0.46%. Interestingly, in Obama's plan, if you add up the amount of tax cuts given to the bottom 3 income levels, it equals the tax increase on the highest income level: 11.5%. Go figure. A tax cut that pays for itself through an increase elsewhere.

Finally, a newly created web site called uses the Tax Policy Center's figures to see what kind of cut you get under Obama's plan.

For my income range, Obama gives me $4734.40 in cuts. That's 112 cases of 160 Size 3 Pampers!

However...McCain gives me $5,947.41 back. Maybe I should vote McCain after all...


Smitty 11:49 PM  

My brother would get nearly $500 under Obama's plan, and nearly $25 under McCain's plan. $25, not $250.

Bob 7:22 AM  

Smitty, I think you calculated something wrong based on the tax cuts you indicated you would get. That is, unless your employer is paying you $500K/ year.

Bob 8:05 AM  

Oh shit, maybe you were right, I guess you get a pretty sweet dependent deduction when you are having kids two at a time. My one dependent doesn't match your three.

Sopor 8:40 AM  

My tax break will be just like Smitty's brother's, $500 from Obama, a measly $25 from McCain.

So for my ridiculously low tax bracket, it's a no-brainer.

Bob 8:45 AM  

To be honest, if I thought we would pay down the national debt, I would prefer to not have a tax cut.

steves 3:27 PM  

I would prefer a tax cut. Besides income taxes, I pay an ass load in property taxes and I don't even have all that great of a house. That being said, I have no problem with my tax money being used to fund vital and useful services. My biggest problem has always been the gov't spending money on stupid shit, like unprovoked wars, programs that don't do what they say they will do, and many others.

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