President Obama today, trying to claim the tax-cutter mantle as tax protesters shut down the White House by throwing tea bags over the fence, said that his “Making Work Pay” tax credit has given tax cuts to more workers than at any other time in history.
“This tax cut will reach 120 million families and put $120 billion directly into their pockets, and it includes the most American workers ever to get a tax cut,” Mr. Obama said.
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs added during a press briefing that the $400 for individuals and $800 for families, for all making less than $250,000 a year, equals “the most workers to ever receive a tax cut in the history of this country.”
I asked former Bush deputy press secretary Tony Fratto (who is also now a CNBC columnist/blogger) about this, and he said it is a claim based purely on population growth.
“It’s a trick,” he said in an e-mail. “There is a bigger working age adult population than ever before.”
“In other words, it’s not a function of the cut. It’s a function of the number of workers available,” he said.
Fratto said that the Bush tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 “were for 100 percent of workers, and that tax cut, at the time, affected the most taxpayers ever in history (using [Obama’s] metric).”
Click here for a positive analysis of the Bush tax cuts and here for a more critical view.
— Jon Ward, White House reporter, The Washington Times
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