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Mitt may be right that 47% of all people pay no income taxes, but he's wrong to suggest they pay no taxes.  There's sales taxes, excise taxes on alcohol and tobacco and property taxes, or higher rent payments to cover the landlord's property taxes.  There's state and local income taxes, which don't have all of the deductions and credits that apply to Federal income taxes.  It's hard to figure out the exact amount of other taxes paid by everyone from these other taxes.

But there's one tax that's easy to calculate, the FICA withholding that pays for Social Security.  It has been 15.3% for all employees since 1990.  If you are on a salary, like me, you pay half, and your employee pays half.  If you work independently, like my wife, you pay the full 15.3%.  There's a temporary cut of 2%, which will end at the end of the year.  As my (Democratic) boss points out, I really pay the full 15.3%, because if he didn't have to pay his share of FCA, I'd get it as pay instead.  My boss also wants single-payer so that we don't have to pay outrageous insurance premiums and he could raise our pay by the insurance costs, but that's another diary

However, these tax rates apply only to the firts $110,000 or so of taxable income.  If you have a much higher taxable income, like Mitt's $25 million, your FICA rate drops to near zero.

Now, since Mitt paid less than 14% of his income in 2010, and who knows how much less than that in previous years, there's only one conclusion

Mitt Romney pays a lower tax rates than many of those " entitled victims that don't take control of their lives" he complains about.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (9+ / 0-)

    The Scout Law (trustworthy, loyal, helpful...) is a GREAT liberal manifesto.

    by DaytonMike on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 08:05:51 AM PDT

  •  This is something I've wondered about. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaytonMike, exreaganite, sunbro, Gorette

    For as long as I can remember, conservatives have been complaining about Americans being over-taxed.  They have a number, I don't recall exactly what, but a number they claim is what the average American pays.  My question is, when they calculate how much tax the average American pays, are they including FICA?  Certainly, it would help drive the number up, but are they trying to have it both ways?  Is FICA a tax when it's convenient for it to be, and not a tax the rest of the time?

  •  I assume (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sunbro, Gorette

    that he pays zero taxes according to Harry Reid, therefore Romney IS a "47 percenter".

    Class Warfare .. indeed.

  •  Mitt's a big moocher (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    He gave her his townhouse and his racing horses
    Each meal she ate was a dozen courses
    Had a million dollars worth of nickels and dimes
    She sat around and counted them all a million times

    Hidehidehidehi (hidehidehidehi)
    Hodehodehodeho (hodehodehodeho)
    Hedehedehedehe (hedehedehedehe)
    Hidehidehideho (hidehidehideho)

    Poor Mitt, poor Mitt, poor Mittie

    -4.75, -5.33 Cheney 10/05/04: "I have not suggested there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11."

    by sunbro on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 08:43:11 AM PDT

  •  Not accurate to characterize FICA as a tax. (0+ / 0-)

    FICA stands for Federal Insurance Contributions Act.

    FDR designed Social Security to be an income insurance program, not a tax and welfare program which FDR argued against.  The benefits of Social Security one receives is based on the contribution history.  So this is more akin to requiring workers to participate in an insurance program.

    The Medicare program however is not designed as an insurance program as benefits are not based upon payments made.

    The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

    by nextstep on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 09:20:52 AM PDT

    •  Don't they call it also "Employment Tax?" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      "extreme concentration of income is incompatible with real democracy.... the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake." Paul Krugman

      by Gorette on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 10:12:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  IRS includes i tin their definition...... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The term employment taxes is confusing, because it means different things in different contexts.

      For this site, we will use the official IRS definition:
      Federal employment taxes include the following:

          Federal income tax withholding
         Social Security and Medicare taxes
          Federal unemployment tax (FUTA)

      Note that some of these taxes may not be payable by your business (withholding), but they must be collected and turned over the IRS.

      "extreme concentration of income is incompatible with real democracy.... the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake." Paul Krugman

      by Gorette on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 10:15:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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