EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

December 13, 2012

Column: Hooray for the contributions of America’s 1 percent

President Barack Obama has lied so often about “the 1 percent,” that even House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and some wobbly Republicans have swallowed Obama’s toxic fiction that “fairness” requires the rich to surrender more of their money to Washington — albeit through narrower deductions rather than higher tax rates.

Washington’s problem is not a paucity of revenues but a nicotine-like addiction to blowing other people’s money. Thus, Republicans should reject tax hikes on anyone, especially to put America’s most successful citizens in their place.

Obama has had America’s top earners in his crosshairs for years:

“I do think at a certain point, you’ve made enough money,” Obama said in April 2010.

“If asking a millionaire to pay the same tax rate as a plumber makes me a class warrior, a warrior for the working class,” Obama said in September 2011, “I will wear that charge as a badge of honor.”

“Some billionaires have a tax rate as low as 1 percent — 1 percent,” Obama announced in December 2011. “That is the height of unfairness.” For this statement, The Washington Post awarded Obama three Pinocchios and added, “An administration official conceded the White House had no actual data to back up the president’s assertion.”

While Obama loudly excoriates the wealthy, the Tax Foundation quietly analyzed the latest IRS data.

The facts pulverize Obama’s lies.

First, the top 1 percent does pay its “fair share” of taxes.

The top 1 percent of tax filers — Americans with adjusted gross incomes of at least $369,691 — earned 18.9 percent of national income and paid 37.4 percent of all income taxes.

The top 10 percent made at least $116,623 each. They earned 45.2 percent of national income and paid 70.6 percent of all income taxes.

If these taxpayers are not paying their fair share, Obama should specify a “fair” percentage.

Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent of taxpayers made less than $34,338 each.

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