David Leonhardt—Why Americans Think the Tax Rate Is High, and Why They’re Wrong

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When people heard that Mitt Romney’s federal income tax rate was about 15 percent, the immediate reaction of many was to assume that their own rate was higher. The top marginal rate is 35 percent, after all, and the marginal rate on a couple with $70,000 in taxable income is 25 percent.

The truth is that most households probably pay a lower rate than Mr. Romney. It is impossible to know for sure, given that he has yet to release his tax return. What is clear, though, is that a large majority of American households — about two out of three — pays less than 15 percent of income to the federal government, through either income taxes or payroll taxes.

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Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingPersonal FinanceTaxesPolitics in GeneralOffice of the President* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

8 Comments Posted January 20, 2012 at 7:25 am

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