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Majority in U.S. say rich pay too little in taxes Study: Income gap between well-off and less wealthy bad for the country

Jeff King 2012/08/28 02:03:07
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WASHINGTONAs the income gap between rich and poor widens, a majority of Americans say the growing divide is bad for the country and believe that wealthy people are not paying enough in taxes, according to a new survey. The poll released Monday by the Pew Research Center points to a particular challenge for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, whose party's policies are viewed by a wide majority as favoring the rich over the middle class and poor.

The poll found that many Americans believe rich people to be intelligent and hard-working but also greedy and less honest than the average American. Nearly six in 10, or 58 percent, say the rich don't pay enough in taxes, while 26 percent believe the rich pay their fair share and 8 percent say they pay too much.

Even among those who describe themselves as "upper class" or "upper middle class," more than half — 52 percent — said upper-income Americans don't pay enough in taxes; only 10 percent said they paid too much. This upper tier was more likely to say they are more financially secure now than they were 10 years ago — 62 percent, compared to 44 percent for those who identified themselves as middle class and 29 percent for the lower class. They are less likely to report problems in paying rents or mortgages, losing a job, paying for medical care or other bills and cutting back on household expenses.

The findings come at the start of this week's Republican National Convention and as both Romney and President Barack Obama seek to appeal to a broad swath of financially struggling voters who identify themselves as middle class. Romney supports an extension of Bush-era tax cuts for everyone including the wealthiest 2 percent, and says his policies will benefit the middle class by boosting the economy and creating jobs.

"The fact that Romney may be viewed as wealthy doesn't necessarily pose problems for his candidacy," said Kim Parker, associate director of Pew Social & Demographic Trends, noting that people see the wealthy as having both positive and negative attributes. "The challenge for Romney lies more in the fact that large majorities say if he is elected president, his policies would likely benefit the wealthy."

The results reinforce a tide of recent economic data showing a widening economic divide. America's middle class has been shrinking in the stagnant economy, and poverty is now approaching 1960s-level highs, while wealth concentrates at the top of the economic ladder. A separate Pew survey earlier this year found that tensions between the rich and poor were increasing and were at their most intense level in nearly a quarter-century. In fact, well-off people do shoulder a big share of the tax burden. Though households earning more than $1 million annually comprise just 0.3 percent of all taxpayers, they pay 20 percent of all federal taxes the government is projected to collect this year, according to the Tax Policy Center, a nonpartisan group that studies tax policy. The figures included income, payroll and estate taxes. In contrast, households earning $50,000 to $75,000 a year accounted for 12 percent of taxpayers and contributed 9 percent of federal taxes, the center's data showed. Some 46 percent of households pay no federal income tax at all, although they do pay payroll, excise and other taxes.

According to the latest findings, about 63 percent of Americans say the GOP favors the rich over the middle class and poor, and 71 percent say Romney's election would be good for wealthy people. A smaller percentage, 20 percent, says the same about the Democratic Party. More Americans — 60 percent — say if Obama is re-elected his policies will benefit the poor, while half say they'll help the middle class and 37 percent say they'll boost the wealthy.

"The Great Recession was not an equal opportunity disemployer," said Sheldon Danziger, a public policy professor at the University of Michigan. He describes the gap between rich and poor as the widest in decades. "College graduates, whites and middle-aged workers had fewer and shorter layoffs than high school graduates, blacks, Hispanics and younger workers. And only a small percentage of the rich work in the hardest-hit industries, like construction and manufacturing."

About 65 percent of Americans say the gap between rich and poor has gotten wider in the past decade, while 20 percent believe it has stayed the same and 7 percent say the gap has gotten smaller. Separately, 57 percent say a widening income gap is a bad thing for society; just 3 percent say it is a good thing.

Asked to estimate how much a family of four would need to earn to be considered wealthy in their area, the median amount given by survey respondents was $150,000. For middle class, the median amount was $70,000.

Many Americans see rich people as more likely to be intelligent (43 percent) and hard-working (42 percent) than average Americans. But the rich are also seen as more likely to be greedy (55 percent). Thirty-four percent of those surveyed say the rich are less likely to be honest than the average person; just 12 percent say the rich are more likely to be honest.

The Pew survey involved telephone interviews with 2,508 adults conducted from July 16 to 26. It has amargin of error of 2.8 percentage points.

Read More: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48802418/ns/business-p...

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  • ComeOnNow 2012/12/27 03:46:37
    the rich pay enough
    ComeOnNow
    The problem is the spending and inefficiencies created by a bloated inefficient government and afflicting more and more entitlement junkies to
    Poverty.
  • Marvelous Wildfire 2012/08/28 05:51:22
    the rich pay enough
    Marvelous Wildfire
    Hmm, so the people who pay *NOTHING*, believe the ones who pay over 85% of the taxes, and create 99% of the jobs, aren't paying "their fair share"?

    WHO CARES WHAT THOSE DEADBEATS BELIEVE?

    Why not tax *EVERYBODY*?
    That way the deadbeats will "have skin in the game" themselves!
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 11:33:22
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 15:01:12
    Marvelous Wildfire
    The "rich" pay the *SAME* sales tax as everyone around them buying the same product, then they pay taxes on their businesses, their luxuries, and pay for their employees "workman's comp", to name just a few.

    But the biggie tax, when "make the rich pay their fair share" is the subject, is *INCOME TAX*.
    That's where 47%, not only *PAY NOTHING*, a high percentage of them get a "*REFUND*" on the *NOTHING* that they paid! (If you send in $2,000, and get $2,300 *BACK*, you paid *NOTHING and got a $300 *"REFUND"* on the *NOTHING* you were taxed.)

    You ask: "The ones who pay over 85% have have 99% of America's wealth should it be the other way around and where are the damn jobs????????????????"

    Many were directly destroyed by the Liberal/Progressives, just as Obama *PROMISED* he would do to the coal industry.

    Other jobs, like GE, were sent *OVERSEAS* where the Liberals sent them and financed them to go. Where the tax rates allow the companies to make a better profit on their investments.
    Where the people actually *WANT* to work, where they understand the envy they have over those who worked and risked to actually start and grow a business isn't something they should resent, but rather appreciate the fact that if they don't work, they don't eat.
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 15:36:57
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 16:01:19 (edited)
    Marvelous Wildfire
    Just because you want to support Obama, the one who is actively destroying job, Obama is still the one who promised to *SKYROCKET ENERGY COST*, and *INCREASE UNEMPLOYMENT* by *BANKRUPTING* major industry in many stated. (Coal)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch...
    So jobs go where Obama sent them.
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 16:35:40
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 16:49:28
    Marvelous Wildfire
    My great-uncle told me: "The dumbass will say: Look who said it! While the wise will seek to find out if the information is *correct*."

    I understand, that if FOX news said "2+2 is 4", you would deny it.

    But I *NEVER* claimed it to be "accurate real info", how could it possibly be?
    FOX *PLAYED* the dumbass' *OWN WORDS*!

    Here's another for you to deny rather than actually *THINK*:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?...
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 17:16:49
  • Jeff King Jeff King 2012/08/28 17:27:20
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 17:38:03
    Marvelous Wildfire
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?...
    What Obama, and apparently you, don't understand what happens if the coal fired generators close: People lose electricity!

    The babbling idiot spoke about nuclear power; speaking about, doesn't *PRODUCE* electricity.
    All the alternative energy sources are fine, but they are like closing down sources that are *IN USE* so as to try and produce electricity from unicorn farts.
    Not realistic or reliable.
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 22:09:56
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 22:21:04
    Marvelous Wildfire
    And what people like you don't realize, is that *NO ONE* wants "polluted air", this would also include the "rich"; The Liberal/Progressives Leaders know that, and that their blind and stupid followers will never question this fact.
  • Reichstolz 2012/08/28 03:00:59
    the rich pay enough
    Reichstolz
    +2
    The majority pays nothing to support the federal burden, so they are hardly a worthy source of opinion.
  • Ol'Dave 2012/08/28 02:17:27
    the rich pay enough
    Ol'Dave
    +2
    Let them KEEP THEIR MONEY so they can MAKE MORE MONEY BY MAKING JOBS HERE (the Tax system needs to be reworked to INCENTIVIZE them to bring jobs back here/ keep jobs here!
  • Yoru Ol'Dave 2012/08/28 02:47:01
    Yoru
    +1
    good luck with that.

    luck
  • Reichstolz Yoru 2012/08/28 03:02:04
  • Yoru Reichstolz 2012/08/28 03:07:11
  • Marvelo... Yoru 2012/08/28 05:55:20
    Marvelous Wildfire
    Have Obama tell them: "I took 714 *BILLION DOLLARS* out of Medicare, to fund ObamaKare. But, *I SAY* that Romney wants to cut several million dollars from Medicare!"
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/28 11:47:12
  • Reichstolz Jeff King 2012/08/28 13:48:20
    Reichstolz
    +1
    Reducing payments to doctors and hospitals is still cutting medicare. Do you work for free? Should a doctor work for free?
  • Jeff King Reichstolz 2012/08/28 14:02:00
  • Reichstolz Jeff King 2012/08/28 15:24:34
    Reichstolz
    I have read the 2,714 pages of the ACA and the 15,000 pages of previous law it refers to. I sold my medical practice when this monstrosity hit committee. Only those, like you, who are too ignorant to think for themselves, would think you can get something for nothing.
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 15:51:58
    Marvelous Wildfire
    Why do you believe Reichstolz needs to "Do some research for yourself" when it is you that is ignorant and not thinking?
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/28 15:49:04
    Marvelous Wildfire
    "That is a bold-faced GOP lie Now to listen to Romney, Ryan, and their minions it was downright thievery! He just took that money and he plopped it into his Obamacare plan." is simply ignorance.

    You're a Liberal, so I'll try and go slow so that maybe you can understand, and not be so confused by my 28 word post.

    *IS* ObamaKare, *MEDICARE*?
    No.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*?
    Yes.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*, and "plopped it into his Obamacare plan", the same "Obamacare plan" that Obama *CLAIMED* was already "fully funded"?
    Yes.

    Do *ALL* doctors accept Medicare?
    No.
    Why not?
    Lack of payment and timely payment and too many odious unnecessary Government rules and regulations.

    Maybe a simple example will help, and be simple enough for you to understand.
    If you had an account at "Bank #1", and one day, your bank decided they needed more funding for their pet project of beautifying the front of the bank in order to attract more customers.

    So to fund this pet project, they took only 15% of the money you and others who had money in the bank, out of your accounts, and put that money into the pet project fund. And no, you can *NOT* close your account, get that money, use that money or access that money in any way.
    *HOWEVER* they will *...






    "That is a bold-faced GOP lie Now to listen to Romney, Ryan, and their minions it was downright thievery! He just took that money and he plopped it into his Obamacare plan." is simply ignorance.

    You're a Liberal, so I'll try and go slow so that maybe you can understand, and not be so confused by my 28 word post.

    *IS* ObamaKare, *MEDICARE*?
    No.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*?
    Yes.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*, and "plopped it into his Obamacare plan", the same "Obamacare plan" that Obama *CLAIMED* was already "fully funded"?
    Yes.

    Do *ALL* doctors accept Medicare?
    No.
    Why not?
    Lack of payment and timely payment and too many odious unnecessary Government rules and regulations.

    Maybe a simple example will help, and be simple enough for you to understand.
    If you had an account at "Bank #1", and one day, your bank decided they needed more funding for their pet project of beautifying the front of the bank in order to attract more customers.

    So to fund this pet project, they took only 15% of the money you and others who had money in the bank, out of your accounts, and put that money into the pet project fund. And no, you can *NOT* close your account, get that money, use that money or access that money in any way.
    *HOWEVER* they will *STILL* make your "Automatic Bill Pay" payments, like your house payment, car payment, insurance payment, power bill payments.
    But to "offset" the 15% they "addressed to the pet project", they will reduce the payments sent to pay your bills by 15% to each one!
    That is what Obama has done.

    If you worked, and one day your employer said "Starting tomorrow, your pay will be reduced 15% for the same job that you are doing now. But your workload will remain the same."
    What would you do? Quit?

    Why do you believe that doctors and hospitals should do, provide service and treatment, that you wouldn't do?
    (more)
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/29 01:48:08
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/29 04:18:18
    Marvelous Wildfire
    I understand, that as you're a Liberal, my using facts, logic and reason overwhelmed your minuscule thought process.

    So you probably didn't realize that you *AVOIDED* my direct address of your profound ignorance.

    So Bottom-Line: *IS* ObamaKare, *MEDICARE*?
    No.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*?
    Yes.
    *DID* Obama actully take the $714 *BILLION* out of *MEDICARE*, and "plopped it into his Obamacare plan", the same "Obamacare plan" that Obama *CLAIMED* was already "fully funded"?
    Yes.

    You're welcome!
  • Jeff King Marvelo... 2012/08/29 04:33:36
  • Marvelo... Jeff King 2012/08/29 04:54:38
    Marvelous Wildfire
    That's only because you're totally ignorant about the full scope of ObamaKare.
  • Reichstolz Yoru 2012/08/28 13:47:16
  • Yoru Reichstolz 2012/08/28 18:01:52
  • Reichstolz Yoru 2012/08/29 01:25:34
  • Yoru Reichstolz 2012/08/29 01:31:09
  • Reichstolz Yoru 2012/08/29 01:33:26
  • Yoru Reichstolz 2012/08/29 01:36:21
  • Reichstolz Yoru 2012/08/29 01:40:45
  • Yoru Reichstolz 2012/08/29 02:01:24 (edited)
    Yoru
    +1
    records huh?

    records huh
  • Marvelo... Yoru 2012/08/29 04:21:34
    Marvelous Wildfire
    And why *SHOULD* he release any more returns?
    What taxPAYER would be more concerned about what moneys Romney has, rather than the money Obama wasted to hide his school transcripts, birth certificate as well as why he was disbarred.
  • Yoru Marvelo... 2012/08/29 14:05:54
    Yoru
    +1
    obama has released his certificate. Rigght, Romney is campaigning to run for president and to represent the people by why should he release anything right? LMFAO
  • Marvelo... Yoru 2012/08/29 15:45:36
    Marvelous Wildfire
    You're *RIGHT*!
    And here is the most authentic copy of Obama's Birth Certificate released to the public:
    Obama s REAL Birth Certificate

    Or are you foolish enough to believe in the BC that states that Obama was born *IN* a hospital . . . that wouldn't exist until several years *AFTER* he was born?

    You know the one, the "Official Birth Certificate", that states that his father was from Kenya, a Country that didn't *EXIST* at the time of Obama's Birth? That declared Obama Senior was "African-American" . . . a term that wouldn't be used until many years after junior's birth.

    While Romney has released what was required by law.

    Now why was the Obama's disbarred again?

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