Tax revenue as a percent of GDP is one metric many use to gauge how much corporate income tax revenue the United States is raising. The advantage of this metric is that it controls for the size of the economy and gives...
- The Tax Policy Blog
- Rich Pay 40% of Nation's Tax Burden, Hillary Clinton Says It...
Rich Pay 40% of Nation's Tax Burden, Hillary Clinton Says It's Not Enough
Ben Smith at Politico has posted a video of Hillary Clinton stating that she does not think America's rich are paying their fair share of taxes. She said, "The rich are not paying their fair share in any nation that is facing the kind of employment issues [America currently does]—whether it's individual, corporate or whatever [form of] taxation forms."
She then went on to praise Brazil as a model for the U.S.: "Brazil has the highest tax-to-GDP rate in the Western Hemisphere and guess what—they're growing like crazy." Clinton concluded, "And the rich are getting richer, but they're pulling people out of poverty."
For now, I will leave aside her bizarre trickle-down assertion that Brazil's high taxes and redistributionist policies are the source of their growth and "lifting all boats" and simply focus on the issue of whether or not the rich are paying their fair share.
The chart below shows estimates by the Tax Policy Center for 2010 of the distribution of income compared to the distribution of all federal taxes (personal income, payroll, and corporate) by percentile. It shows that households earning over about $212,000 earn about 30 percent of the nation's income but pay more than 40 percent of all federal taxes.
By contrast, those earning less than $105,000 collectively earn about 46 percent of the nation's income but pay 32 percent of the taxes. The bottom quintile pays nothing.
So the question for Mrs. Clinton is, if 40 percent of the nation's tax burden is not enough then what is the rich's fair share of tax?
Buy this blogger a cup of coffee!
Join the Tax Foundation's fight for sound tax policy Go
About the Tax Policy Blog
The Tax Policy Blog is the official weblog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.