The Congressional Research Service has a new report up that analyzes the impact of implementing the so-called “Buffet Rule,” meaning changing the tax code so the very rich pay more.
The statement in the introduction that’s getting attention is as follows:
The results of this analysis show that the current U.S. tax system violates the Buffett rule in that a large proportion of millionaires pay a smaller percentage of their income in taxes than a significant proportion of moderate-income taxpayers. Roughly a quarter of all millionaires (about 94,500 taxpayers) face a tax rate that is lower than the tax rate faced by 10.4 million moderate-income taxpayers (10% of the moderate-income taxpayers).
Such was not always the case, of course. Heck, back in the day, about the time I was born, the highest federal individual income tax rate was as high as 92 percent. It fell into the 70 percents during the 1960s, then to 50 percent in the early-to-mid 1980s, then as low as 28 percent. Then Clinton came along with his ruinous economic plan – which received exactly no Republican votes in Congress – that hiked the top rate to 39.6 percent, destroying the economy in the process.
It’s now 35 percent, btw, although few actually pay that.
But, but, won’t higher taxes (“higher” being a relative term, as I note above) kill job creation and destroy investment? CRS – Research suggests that these reforms are unlikely to affect many small businesses or to deter saving and investment.
BTW, there is enormous support across the land for this from the population at large (more than 60 percent, or even 70 percent favoring, depending on the poll, including a majority of Rs) as well as global investors (more than 60 percent).