Every American's paycheck will be smaller on Jan. 1 -- the only question is by how much. The payroll-tax break put in place two years ago will expire Dec. 31, and no one in Washington wants to extend it again. On top of this, all income tax rates will rise unless Congress and President Obama act.
A newly discovered audio recording explains why Mr. Obama prefers the current state of affairs. "I actually believe in redistribution," he said in 1998 at Loyola University. It's perfectly consistent for a redistributionist to want to raise rates for the upper-income brackets and small businesses in order to bestow greater entitlements on the growing segment of society that pays no income tax.
"I know some believe that government should take from some to give to the others. I think the president makes it clear in the tape that was released today that that's what he believes," Mitt Romney told Fox News Channel's Neil Cavuto on Tuesday. "Free people pursuing free enterprise is the only way we'll create a strong and growing middle class and the only way we'll help people out of poverty."
If elected, Mr. Romney promises to work to enact legislation retroactively maintaining current tax rates for next year, persuade Congress to overhaul the system to eliminate loopholes and deductions, and then lower everyone's rates by 20 percent.
In contrast, Mr. Obama won't budge from hiking taxes on those who make over $200,000, even if that means throwing everyone else under the bus. Mr. Obama's tax-the-rich plan would hit a million small-business employers resulting in a loss of 710,000 jobs, according to the National Federation of Independent Businesses.
When Taxmaggedon hits, even those earning less than $8,700 will see (theoretical) marginal rates rise from 10 to 15 percent. For those who make between $35,350 and $388,350, every marginal rate will increase by 3 points. Those with incomes above $388,350 will have their tax rate go from from 35 to 39.6 percent.
By Americans for Tax Reform's calculations, capital gains will spike from 15 to 23.8 percent and the dividend tax will skyrocket from 15 to 43.4 percent because it will include the new Obamacare investment surtax.
Mr. Obama refuses to negotiate with Congress to keep this from happening, preferring to grandstand on campaign stages. Meanwhile, some of his allies on Capitol Hill are defecting.
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, Illinois Democrat and national co-chairman of the Obama campaign, has been floating the idea of extending all current rates for six months, according to Politico. Sen. Bill Nelson, Florida Democrat, said he would also consider a temporary option. Forty currently serving upper-chamber Democrats voted to extend these rates in 2010 and will feel the pressure.
American families already hard hit by the failure of Obamanomics shouldn't suffer further so this president can put more on Uncle Sam's dole.
Emily Miller is a senior editor for the Opinion pages at The Washington Times.
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