Hours before President Barack Obama’s third State of the Union address in which he will push higher tax rates on the wealthiest under the guise of “fairness,” pivoting off the poster woman for higher rates, Warren Buffet’s secretary who supposedly pays a higher income tax rate than her boss, ABC and NBC advanced the narrative which confuses tax brackets with effective tax rates.
In fact, Romney pays at a much higher rate than most Americans and most people at Romney’s wealth level pay a significantly higher rate. “Mitt’s millions,” ABC anchor Diane Sawyer teased, “What Mitt Romney’s taxes really show about, wealth, taxes and fairness.” On the NBC Nightly News, Andrea Mitchell referred to “critics of the tax code that favors the rich.”
David Muir, in the World News piece plugged by Sawyer, recounted Romney’s tax payments: “His tax rate? In 2010, about 13.9 percent, perfectly legal under the current tax code which allows Americans to pay a much lower rate, a capital gains tax, when their earnings come from investments, and not a job.” Muir went to a “tax analyst” who dubiously insisted: “If he were a doctor or lawyer with the same salary, he would be paying 35 percent.”
Muir, however, failed to point out how that rate (estimated to be closer to 15 percent for 2011) is far greater than most Americans pay. As NB’s Noel Sheppard noted last week, after accounting for deductions, 97 percent pay an income tax rate lower than 15 percent – a number confirmed in this table posted by the liberal Tax Policy Center.
Journalists have no excuse for their continued distortions since one of their own, USA Today reporter Sandra Block, laid it out quite clearly in an article on the front page of Friday’s (January 20) “Money” section, “Tax bracket vs. tax rate: They’re two different things.” She explained:
Ask most Americans how much they pay in taxes, and they’ll probably refer to their tax bracket, a series of rates that ranges from 10% to 35%. By that measure, Mitt Romney’s tax rate sounds outrageously low.
Read More at Media Research Center By Brent Baker, Media Research Center