Speakeasy forum

General discussion

The Election Choice: Taxes

by critic411 / October 26, 2008 12:42 AM PDT

When it comes to taxes, the difference between Barack Obama and John McCain is arguably as wide as it's been in a presidential race since Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale battled in 1984. Sen. Obama is proposing to raise taxes more than any recent candidate, while Sen. McCain wants to cut them substantially. Most of the campaign debate has been over whose taxes would be raised, and whose cut.

Mr. Obama would roll back the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for taxpayers in the top two brackets, raising the top two marginal rates of income tax to 36% and 39.6% from 33% and 35%. The 33% rate begins to hit this year at incomes of $164,550 for an individual and $200,300 for joint filers. Mr. Obama claims no "working families" earning less than $250,000 would pay more in taxes, but that's because he defines income more broadly than the taxable income line on the IRS form. If you're an individual with taxable income of $164,550, you will pay more taxes.

Mr. Obama's most dramatic departure from current tax policy is his promise to lift the cap on income on which the Social Security payroll tax is applied. Currently, the employer and employee each pay 6.2% up to $102,000, a level that is raised for inflation each year. The Obama campaign says he'd raise the payroll tax rate on incomes above $250,000 by as much as two to four percentage points -- though it's unclear if that higher rate would apply to the employee, the employer, or both.

In any case, lifting the cap would change the nature of Social Security from an insurance program -- which pays out based on how much you paid in -- into a wealth-transfer program that is far more progressive.

Mr. Obama is also famously promising that 95% of all Americans will get a tax cut. However, he would not reduce tax rates. His tax cuts come in the form of tax credits, most of which are also "refundable." In tax jargon, "refundable" means that you get the credit even if you owe no income taxes at all -- which means the government cuts you a check. (Tax credit to NON TAX PAYERS equals wealth transfers)
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: The Election Choice: Taxes
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: The Election Choice: Taxes
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
How is that any different from the stimulus checks?
by Diana Forum moderator / October 26, 2008 2:04 AM PDT

Not to mention the new stimulus checks the government is proposing. Those that didn't pay any taxes still got $300 per person in the household.

This doesn't even count the earned income credit for those that don't pay taxes.


Collapse -
Well, for one thing...
by J. Vega / October 26, 2008 2:36 AM PDT

Well, for one thing, not everybody would get something out of Obama's tax cut plan. The only thing I can see possible in my case is "A 'savings' tax credit of 50% up to $1,000". I do try to save, so I might get something out of whatever that means. If didn't get anything out of that, I would not qualify for anything else. I guess that would make me one of those 5% who don't, rather than the 95%.

Popular Forums
Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
Laptops 21,181 discussions
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
Phones 17,137 discussions
Security 31,287 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
Windows 10 2,657 discussions


Help, my PC with Windows 10 won't shut down properly

Since upgrading to Windows 10 my computer won't shut down properly. I use the menu button shutdown and the screen goes blank, but the system does not fully shut down. The only way to get it to shut down is to hold the physical power button down till it shuts down. Any suggestions?