As with most things, the nuanced opinion of the American people on their taxes will be lost on the Biden administration.
A new Gallup poll helps explain why.
Former President Donald Trump cut taxes dramatically in 2017, arguably planting the seeds that got the economy racing to its fastest levels since the 1960s – at least until COVID hit last year.
The problem was that no one thought so. As financial adviser Gary Halbert pointed out in April 2019, after the cuts had been in place for one full earning year, 80 percent of Americans received a tax cut, yet more than 80 percent did not believe it.
That same month, The New York Times explained why: “To a large degree,” the Times reported, “the gap between perception and reality on the tax cuts appears to flow from a sustained — and misleading — effort by liberal opponents of the law to brand it as a broad middle-class tax increase.” The Times conveniently forgot to note that it, too, was among those “liberal opponents” who repeatedly trashed Trump’s tax cuts.
Nonetheless, that perception has lingered since Trump left office.
Gallup’s poll, released last Thursday, found that 50 percent of Americans believe their taxes are too high – even though the rates remain the same, despite President Joe Biden’s call for massive tax hikes.
That was up from the 45 percent average Gallup recorded over the three previous years.
Gallup also uncovered some other tidbits that Team Biden ought to consider.
For one thing, 55 percent of respondents said their taxes were “fair.” And that sentiment was spread across all income brackets. Fifty-seven percent of households making more than $100,000 a year felt their tax bill was fair, as did 56 percent of those between $40,000 and $100,000 and 54 percent of those below $40,000.
Among Democrats, the ratio on fairness was 65 percent, the highest level that Gallup found among those on the left since 2010. Again, as a reminder, these are the tax levels enacted by Trump and Republicans in Congress.
To recap, even with the reduced rates enacted by Trump, half of Americans believe their taxes are already too high, although a solid majority in each income bracket thinks their current levy is fair.
So why raise taxes and alienate at least half the country?
But here’s the stat Biden really should note.
Gallup found that only 4 percent of respondents believe their taxes are too low.
Sadly, this pitiful minority will be the group Biden and congressional Democrats will most likely listen to.
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