What’s amazing to me is the amount of information readily available about the presidential candidates’ plans and the complete lack of attention to that information by mainstream media and taxpayers. There’s a must-read article at The Tax Foundation, a nonpartisan organization that’s been praised by both major political parties for more than 70 years. Mark Robyn’s article ‘Obama’s income tax cliff for senior citizens’ is a perfect example of branding trumping reality. Obama fans see an engaging speaker who easily could have carved out a career in show business. Realists see a politician reminiscent of Democratic president Lyndon B. Johnson whose ambitious plans edged the country ever closer to socialism. Robyn explains an example of what could happen under an Obama tax plan:
A husband and wife are both seniors with a combined income of $49,500. Under Obama’s plan they would pay no income taxes. But then they decide to sell their coin collection. They sell the coins for $500 and report the capital gain to the IRS. Since only those making less than $50,000 are exempt, they expect they might owe a few cents on the excess $1 of income over $49,999. But when Tax Day rolls around they are hit with a tax liability totaling a whopping $3,585. Now instead of having an income of $49,500 and owing no tax, their income is $50,000 and they owe $3,585, putting their after-tax income at $46,415. They would have been better off not earning the extra money at all.
The Tax Foundation elaborates on the plan and in my opinion raises yet another warning flag about the junior senator from Illinois. Of course, Obama is subject to change his positions frequently, but the article I cite is based on his latest plan.
The Tax Foundation’Obama’s income tax cliff for senior citizens’ by Mark Robyntaxfoundation.org