As we approach the Nov. 3 election, the political claims are fast and furious (but without any exciting car escapades … yet).
When it comes to taxes, incumbent Donald J. Trump is relying on the tax breaks that were part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that became law in late 2017. It permanently reduced business tax rates and temporarily revised, through 2025, some key individual taxes.
Trump and his fellow Republicans are hoping those tax cuts will be enough to fend off Democratic challengers, both at the presidential and Congressional levels.
But their hedging their tax bets by attacking former Vice President Joe Biden's tax plan. This morning, Trump and the head of the national GOP office again lashed out at his political rivals tax proposals, contending more than 80 percent of us would see historic tax increases under a Biden Administration.
SLEEPY JOE BIDEN IS PROPOSING THE BIGGEST TAX HIKE IN OUR COUNTRY'S HISTORY! CAN ANYBODY REALLY VOTE FOR THIS?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 17, 2020
Joe Biden promised on Day 1 to raise taxes on 82% of Americans...in the middle of an economic recovery.— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) October 17, 2020
We cannot afford Biden!
Notwithstanding Twitter's erratic truthfulness policy and decisions by the Federal Communications Commission and Supreme Court that lies are protected in public discourse, these social media items are false.
So today's Saturday Shout Outs go to some fact checkers of these claims.
$400,000 is the cut-off: The Washington Post recently took a look at Biden's claim that he won't raise taxes on people making less than $400,000
Glenn Kessler, the paper's Fact Checker columnist, notes that analyses by five organizations that focus on tax and fiscal matters tended to agree that Biden's tax increase would fall almost entirely on the very wealthy.
Specifically, Kessler says the groups found that virtually all of the revenue that would be raised under the Biden tax plan would come from the very wealthy or from corporations, with about half of the money coming from the top 0.1 percent and three-quarters from the top 1 percent of households.
That's leaves 99 percent or more of us who, contrary to Trump et al claims, wouldn't see a tax increase if Biden moves into the Oval Office and is able to convince Congress to enact his plan.
Businesses and high-income earners would pay: One of the groups cited in The Washington Post analysis is the Tax Policy Center (TPC), a joint endeavor of the Urban Institute and Brookings Institution.
TPC Senior Fellow Howard Gleckman writes on the group's TaxVox blog that while Biden would raise taxes over 10 years by $2.4 trillion, nearly all of that revenue would come from businesses and high-income households.
"In 2022, on average, all but the highest-income 20 percent would get a tax cut under Biden's plan, while the top 1 percent — those making about $790,000 or more — would see substantial reductions in their after-tax incomes," " says Gleckman in his overview of TPC's updated (fittingly on extended tax deadline day Oct. 15) analysis of Biden's plan.
So that's 80 percent of us that TPC says would pay less in federal taxes, not pay more tax as the GOP erroneously claims.
It's your money and vote: If you're happy with Trump and your Republican lawmakers and how your taxes play out under the TCJA, then vote for those folks. That's your right as an American citizen.
But know the truth, at least about taxes, when you cast your ballot.
You also might find these items of interest:
- Trump vs. Biden on taxes, a 2020 election preview
- Joe Biden's tax proposals: a state-by-state breakout
- Capital gains tax outlook: Trump says cut, Biden pro hike