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Yes, the rich do pay higher taxes

August 29, 2011

Whenever you point out that the rich do pay significantly higher federal taxes than the poor, somebody shoots right back: what about payroll taxes?

Whenever you say that the tax system already leans heavily on the wealthy, someone says "Warren Buffett wants higher taxes for rich people, so you should, too."

The center-left Tax Policy Center has issued data that these folks should ponder. A sample:

Click chart to enlarge.

This data shows that even when you take the payroll taxes into account, the tax system is highly progressive. This data also usefully incorporates the effect of corporation income taxes into the equation, a factor Mr. Buffett famously ignores when pleading for higher taxes on other people -- and it's only on other people, as he already is free to give the government as much as he wishes.

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