Tuesday, July 31, 2012

On Dean Baker on Tax Resentment

Dean Baker writes

The segment also included the bizarre claim that there is widespread resentment against low and moderate income people who do not pay income taxes. It would be interesting if it presented evidence that supported this view.

I note in comments that there is very clear and strong evidence on the question which shows that the view is nonsense.

There is and there has been overwhelmingly strong evidence on whether there is widespread resentment of the low taxes paid by low income people. For 20 years Gallup has been asking if the respondent, middle class people, high income people, corporations and low income people are paying their fair share of taxes, less than their fair share or more than their fair share.

In every poll a solid majority responded that high income people and corporations pay less than their fair share. In the latest poll only 21% said that low income people pay less than their fair share while 40% said that low income people pay more than their fair share.
(go to "View methodology, full question results, and trend data" and get a pdf to see how long Wessel has been wrong.

21% is a very low fraction of the population. There are few issues where such a small fraction agrees with the Republican party line (google 27% crazification factor).

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