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Thus Far under Obama, the Only Individuals Paying Higher Taxes Are Smokers and Tanners, But They May Have Company Soon

1 min readBy: William Ahern

Republicans and Democrats are putting out dueling press releases (Republican and Democratic) showing that Democrats have raised/lowered your taxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. es. As is typically the case, both parties are technically correct but deceptive.

While in power, Democrats and Pres. Obama have passed tax creditA tax credit is a provision that reduces a taxpayer’s final tax bill, dollar-for-dollar. A tax credit differs from deductions and exemptions, which reduce taxable income, rather than the taxpayer’s tax bill directly. s for most Americans that went into effect in 2009 and 2010 as part of the stimulus bill. During that same time period, the only tax increases enacted and already being collected from individuals are a higher tax on cigarettes ($1.01 per pack) and the new 10% tax on tanning services. Other tax increases have been imposed on businesses, which indirectly hit individual workers, consumers and shareholders.

Going forward, a litany of tax increases (some small, some large) on both individuals and businesses have been enacted and will take effect in future years as the health care law takes phases in. Furthermore, all of the Bush-era tax cuts and virtually all of the tax credits passed thusfar by Obama and the Democratic Congress (mostly in the stimulus bill) are set to expire on December 31, 2010. Although Democrats want to extend some of those, they plan to let some of them expire.

On net, then, Americans have thusfar paid lower taxes as a result of the policies of the 111th Congress and the Obama administration. Going forward, however, the administration plans on collecting significantly higher taxes.