Biden's Tax Claim 'Beyond the Pale Even for Politics'

March 20, 2023
World Net Daily

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

Joe Biden is under fire from fact-checkers – yet again – over his claim that billionaires pay only a 3% tax rate.

His claim was posted on social media over the weekend and said, "No billionaire should be paying a lower tax than somebody working as a schoolteacher or a firefighter."

Actually, he probably meant a lower tax rate.

The New York Post pointed out that his statistic was "questionable."

It explained, "It is unclear where the 3% figure came from, and it contradicts figures the White House has issued in the past. In February, the White House issued a fact sheet called 'The Biden Economic Plan Is Working,' which calculated how much tax the U.S. could collect if it counted unrealized gains – a potential profit on an unsold asset – as income."

At that time, Biden claimed billionaires pay "just 8%."

The report noted Howard Gleckman, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institute, has explained, "Using the existing definition of taxable income, really rich people pay an average federal income tax rate in the mid-20s. If you want to include unrealized gains in your denominator, as the White House does, the average rate would go way down."

In the report, Twitter CEO Elon Musk, who also holds control of SpaceX and Tesla, said, "I paid 53% taxes on my Tesla stock options (40% Federal & 13% state), so I must be lifting the average!"

Constitutional expert Jonathan Turley, whose testimony on legal issues has been solicited for Congress numerous times, called Biden's claim was "bogus."

"Joe Biden this weekend proved the truth to the old adage that there are 'lies, damned lies, and statistics.' Biden is again arguing that the wealthy do not pay their fair share of taxes."

He described Biden's latest claim as a "whopper" and said it was "truly beyond the pale even for politics."

He pointed out that in America more than 40% of households pay no federal taxes at all, and the top 1% pay 40% of tax revenues. Actually, the top 25% of earners paid almost 90% of all taxes in 2020.

He said Biden, to get that figure, apparently includes unrealized gains in his calculations.

But that, Turley said, "is downright dishonest."

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