"It is wrong that in the United States of America, a teacher or a nurse or a construction worker who earns $50,000 should pay higher tax rates than somebody pulling in $50 million."
he must have misspoke... what he should have said is, "It is wrong to think that someone earning $50,000 pays higher tax rates than somebody earning $50 million. Because they don't."
On average, the wealthiest people in America pay a lot more taxes than the middle class or the poor, according to private and government data. They pay at a higher rate, and as a group, they contribute a much larger share of the overall taxes collected by the federal government.
literally half of all taxes (49.8%) paid in are paid by the top 4.5% (who make $200,000 or more)... in 2009, that was $431 million paid in.
Obama's claim hinges on the fact that, for high-income families and individuals, investment income is often taxed at a lower rate than wages. The top tax rate for dividends and capital gains is 15%. The top marginal tax rate for wages is 35%, though that is reserved for taxable income above $379,150.
so if you have money to invest, you are taxed at a level rate, no matter how much you have invested... people with more money have more to invest... if we tax investments at higher rates, people will invest less because they will get less (net) return... i thought we were trying to fix the economy.
"People who are doing quite well and worry about low-income people not paying any taxes bemoan the fact that they get so many tax breaks that they are zeroed out," said Roberton Williams, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center. "People at the bottom of the distribution say, 'But all of those rich guys are getting bigger tax breaks than we're getting,' which is also the case."
here's the layman's version... everyone can deduct a portion of their college tuition from their taxes... let's say (for sake of argument) that you can deduct 100%... so, if you go to Tinytown Community College, and pay $1,000 in tuition; then you get $1,000 tax break... but if you go to Harvard Medical School at $47,500 a year; then you get a $47,500 tax break... but some (liberals) think it is unfair that a rich person can afford Harvard and also gets a bigger tax break.
this is simply class envy... and politicians have escalated it to class warfare.
Fact check: The wealthy already pay more taxes – USATODAY.com - By Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press
IRS raw data (excel format)