I posted a few days ago about the singularly un-Christian tweet from’ America’s pastor’ Rick Warren, in which he transmitted yet again that stupid meme that 50% of Americans pay NO taxes!! It is of course false on it’s face, since there is no way to avoid taxes. What is true is that 50% of Americans pay no Federal Income taxes.
I just visited a site new to me, and one I look forward to visiting again, where Donald Marron takes a moment to tell us who those 50% are, and the reasons why they pay no federal income taxes..
The number one reason should come as no surprise. It’s because they have low incomes. As my colleague Bob Williams notes:
“A couple with two children earning less than $26,400 . . . their $11,600 standard deduction and four exemptions of $3,700 each reduce their taxable income to zero.”
Low incomes (or, if you prefer, the standard deduction and personal exemptions) account for fully half of the people who pay no federal income tax.
The second reason is that for many senior citizens, Social Security benefits are exempt from federal income taxes. That accounts for about 22% of the people who pay no federal income tax.
The third reason is that America uses the tax code to provide benefits to low-income families, particularly those with children. Taken together, the earned income tax credit, the child credit, and the childcare credit account for about 15% of the people who pay no federal income tax.
Taken together, those three factors — incomes that fall below the standard deduction and personal exemptions; the exemption for most Social Security benefits; and tax benefits aimed at low-income families and children — account for almost 90% of the Americans who pay no federal income tax.
Of course, they’re also probably lefty pinko lazy gay communist liberals. Or so suggests ‘Pastor’ Warren.