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Old 09-25-2012, 12:58 PM  
BWillie BWillie is online now
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Understanding Romney's Tax Return

I have been reading some things about Romney's tax returns, and trying to come to an understanding of it. I know it's easy to go omg omg he's rich and only was taxed on 14% of his income or whatever it is. However, reading up on it, he donated 4.1 million dollars to charity in 2011, which was more than 30% of his income.

So, obviously, he is going to have a tax deduction for that. BUT, he still had to donate 30%+! of his income to do it. And there is evidence that shows on average, for the last 20 years he has donated at least 15% of his income to charity each year. It seems to me that all of the headlines indicating he only "pays" 14% taxes on his income may be the wrong way to look at it. I hardly believe ANY of you on this board donate anywhere near 30% of their income to charity. I know I donate about 0.007% of my income a year to charity/United Way (about $50 per biweekly pay period), and I feel that is even way more than most people even do.

Again, I don't know everything about this issue. Would like to hear thoughts of those smarter than I am and what they think about this. Please don't base your responses on partisan hatred, just the facts at hand.
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Old 09-25-2012, 01:04 PM   #2
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No no. Fair share. He has to pay his fair share and then people will feel better about themselves.
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Old 09-25-2012, 01:13 PM   #3
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He's a rich bastard that doesn't know anything about how to run a business or government.
He's less qualified than the community organizer that has called for redistribution of wealth all his life.

That's all you need to know,
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Old 09-25-2012, 01:32 PM   #4
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What definition of income are you using? His AGI or what he actually makes?
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Old 09-25-2012, 01:40 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by mlyonsd View Post
He's a rich bastard that doesn't know anything about how to run a business or government.
He's less qualified than the community organizer that has called for redistribution of wealth all his life.

That's all you need to know,
Well said.
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Old 09-25-2012, 02:01 PM   #6
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I said this in the other thread, but my effective tax rate last year was only a little higher than his. I didnt do anything fancy. All I did was have a lot of charitable contributions. I didn't have a mortgage deduction or any dependents to claim. It doesn't take any loopholes or trickery to be under 15%.

I don't care if my effective rate is higher than his, because his income creates more jobs than mine, because he gives so much money to charitable causes, and because we are close and I think everyone should pay the same % no matter what their income level.

I also think there is a belief out there among a lot of people that they are paying 30% or more so in federal. They "feel" their total tax burden, not their effective federal tax rate, and so they hear "14%" and think they think Romney's total tax burden is half of theirs. Obviously that's wrong, but I think the media and others know this and are letting people think this without going into particulars that would clarify.
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Old 09-25-2012, 02:11 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
I also think there is a belief out there among a lot of people that they are paying 30% or more so in federal. They "feel" their total tax burden, not their effective federal tax rate, and so they hear "14%" and think they think Romney's total tax burden is half of theirs. Obviously that's wrong, but I think the media and others know this and are letting people think this without going into particulars that would clarify.
Should be "marginal", but other than that, you're exactly right. The large majority of people pay effective tax rates lower than 14%, most of them much lower. For example, a household with a $50K income pays a less than 5% effective rate. Unfortunately, we have a lot of tax illiterates who think 14% is a crazy low effective rate.
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Old 09-25-2012, 02:13 PM   #8
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Should be "marginal", but other than that, you're exactly right. The large majority of people pay effective tax rates lower than 14%, most of them much lower. For example, a household with a $50K income pays a less than 5% effective rate. Unfortunately, we have a lot of tax illiterates who think 14% is a crazy low effective rate.
Right. Thanks for the correction.

It illustrates how few people understand the basics of tax issues, and how effective the Democrat strategy here is. They talk about Romney's tax returns, but they don't want to talk tax policy at all.
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Old 09-25-2012, 02:23 PM   #9
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Right. Thanks for the correction.

It illustrates how few people understand the basics of tax issues, and how effective the Democrat strategy here is. They talk about Romney's tax returns, but they don't want to talk tax policy at all.
Yea, you have hit the nail on the head here. The media and Dem strategy is to continue to promote class envy and keep a huge block of voters uninformed.
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Old 09-25-2012, 03:19 PM   #10
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Old 09-27-2012, 07:44 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
I said this in the other thread, but my effective tax rate last year was only a little higher than his. I didnt do anything fancy. All I did was have a lot of charitable contributions. I didn't have a mortgage deduction or any dependents to claim. It doesn't take any loopholes or trickery to be under 15%.

I don't care if my effective rate is higher than his, because his income creates more jobs than mine, because he gives so much money to charitable causes, and because we are close and I think everyone should pay the same % no matter what their income level.

I also think there is a belief out there among a lot of people that they are paying 30% or more so in federal. They "feel" their total tax burden, not their effective federal tax rate, and so they hear "14%" and think they think Romney's total tax burden is half of theirs. Obviously that's wrong, but I think the media and others know this and are letting people think this without going into particulars that would clarify.

Your a smart man. I wish the media would be more honest with this stuff.



http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012...#ixzz27ZSphHft




President Obama's campaign, with a good dose of help from the media, is pushing a claim that millionaire Mitt Romney is taxed at a "lower rate" than someone making $50,000 a year.

The claim, though, is open to debate. It only holds up in a particular scenario in which both income and all payroll taxes are counted.

The president's campaign presumably is referring to Romney's release last week of his 2011 tax returns, which showed he paid an effective tax rate of 14.1 percent.

This revelation, as might be expected, fueled a wave of campaign stump speeches and videos. The latest was an Obama Web video blasting Romney's "strange take on tax fairness." It included clips of people accusing Romney of paying a lower rate than "average" Americans. An accompanying campaign email said: "Mitt Romney admitted he thinks it's fair that his $20 million income was taxed at a lower rate than someone making $50,000."

IRS data, though, shows that Romney's effective income tax rate -- that's what he pays as a percentage of his income once deductions and other benefits are factored in -- is actually far higher than what most Americans pay.

And it's certainly higher than what someone making $50,000 pays.

IRS data from 2010 shows someone making between $50,000 and $75,000 on average pays an effective rate of 7.8 percent. Even someone making between $100,000 and $200,000 pays a 12.1 percent rate -- also lower than Romney's.

So what is the Obama campaign referring to? There are a couple possibilities.

The campaign likely is trying to make the point that Romney's income -- at least the huge chunk of it that is derived from investments -- is taxed at a 15 percent rate, while others who earn their money from a paycheck are taxed at marginal income rates going all the way up to 35 percent.

The latter percentage, though, comes down once deductions and exemptions are included. The Tax Foundation estimated in a report in January that Romney's rate in 2010 -- which was also about 14 percent -- was higher than what 97 percent of Americans pay.

The math works out better for the Obama campaign's claims if all payroll taxes are included in the formula.

Since Romney earns most his income from investments and not from a paycheck, he doesn't have to pay much toward Social Security and Medicare taxes. But if both the employee and employer share of those taxes are included, according to a Tax Policy Center chart, the middle tier of earners would be paying a 15.5 percent effective rate. (As pointed out in an earlier report by FactCheck.org.)

That would be slightly higher than Romney's rate.

The Obama campaign, asked about its latest Web video, told FoxNews.com "you can't ignore the payroll tax" considering how big of a hit that is for most middle-class families.

The Obama campaign also referred FoxNews.com to Romney's comments to CBS' "60 Minutes.

In the interview, Romney was asked by reporter Scott Pelley whether Romney's rate is "fair to the guy who makes $50,000 and paid a higher rate than you did?"

Without disputing that claim, Romney said it was fair and explained: "It is a low rate. And one of the reasons why the capital gains tax rate is lower is because capital has already been taxed once at the corporate level, as high as 35 percent."

The claim by Pelley, though, made certain assumptions without explaining them.

Obama used Pelley's phrasing to repeat the claim Monday on ABC's "The View."

"Yesterday Governor Romney on 60 Minutes said -- was asked does he think it is fair that he pays a lower tax rate than somebody that's making $50,000 a year, and he said yes," Obama said.

As the Media Research Center pointed out, an ABC reporter also claimed that Romney's 14.1 percent rate was "lower" than that of an auto mechanic making $75,000.

While Romney may or may not pay less than the average middle-class earner -- depending on how one defines middle class and how one defines tax rate -- one thing is clear: Romney does pay at a lower rate than the typical wealthy person.

IRS data for 2010 showed those making between $1 million and $10 million typically paid at an effective tax rate of more than 25 percent.
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Originally Posted by Cassel's Reckoning:

Matt once made a very nice play in Seattle where he spun away from a pass rusher and hit Bowe off his back foot for a first down.

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Old 09-27-2012, 07:52 AM   #12
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I have been reading some things about Romney's tax returns, and trying to come to an understanding of it. I know it's easy to go omg omg he's rich and only was taxed on 14% of his income or whatever it is. However, reading up on it, he donated 4.1 million dollars to charity in 2011, which was more than 30% of his income.

So, obviously, he is going to have a tax deduction for that. BUT, he still had to donate 30%+! of his income to do it. And there is evidence that shows on average, for the last 20 years he has donated at least 15% of his income to charity each year. It seems to me that all of the headlines indicating he only "pays" 14% taxes on his income may be the wrong way to look at it. I hardly believe ANY of you on this board donate anywhere near 30% of their income to charity. I know I donate about 0.007% of my income a year to charity/United Way (about $50 per biweekly pay period), and I feel that is even way more than most people even do.

Again, I don't know everything about this issue. Would like to hear thoughts of those smarter than I am and what they think about this. Please don't base your responses on partisan hatred, just the facts at hand.
I give the guy credit for the donation, sure, but most people couldn't give 30% of their income to charity because, you know, they would have to stop eating. You can only give that kind of percentage if you've got wealth waaay beyond your needs.

He was also gearing up for a 2012 Presidential run, so I'd be surprised if 2011 wasn't an outlier for contributions. A more insightful baseline would be an average for the 5 or so years pre-dating 2011.

But honestly, I don't really give a rat's ass about how much he gives to charity, nor about how much wealth he has, other than to the extent it influences his position on issues etc. I don't penalize a candidate for being wealthy. If so, then George Washington (one of the wealthiest Americans in history, relatively speaking) would take a huge hit, for example.
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Old 09-27-2012, 07:55 AM   #13
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Oh, and charitable donations shouldn't be tax deductible to begin with, but that's another story (and one I'll never get what I want on, so I'm not going to worry about it).
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Old 09-27-2012, 08:04 AM   #14
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I give the guy credit for the donation, sure, but most people couldn't give 30% of their income to charity because, you know, they would have to stop eating. You can only give that kind of percentage if you've got wealth waaay beyond your needs.
Or you're POTUS where food, travel, and all other expenses are covered.
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Old 09-27-2012, 08:07 AM   #15
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Or you're POTUS where food, travel, and all other expenses are covered.

Sure, though you've still got to retire. Let's face it, Romney never needs to worry about money for the rest of his life. Most politicians can't really say that.
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