For Immediate Release: June 20, 2012
Contact: Anne Singer, 202-299-1066, ext. 27

New Analysis Finds GOP Approach to Bush Tax Cuts would Give Richest One Percent of Americans $50,660 Per Year More and Give Poorest 20 Percent $150 Less on Average than Obama’s Approach

Citizens for Tax Justice Compares the Two Approaches to Extending Some or All of the Bush Tax Cuts, Nationally and State-by-State

Washington, DC – Middle-income and low-income Americans would pay somewhat more in taxes under the Congressional Republicans’ approach to extending the Bush tax cuts than they would under President Obama’s approach, while high-income Americans would pay far less under the Republican approach, according to a new analysis from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) and Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ).

Under the President’s approach, in 2013, the poorest 20 percent of Americans would receive an average tax cut of $270 while the richest one percent would get an average tax cut of $20,130. Under the Congressional Republicans’ approach, the poorest 20 percent of Americans would receive an average tax cut of $120 while the richest one percent would receive an average cut of $70,790.

The Bush tax cuts extension outlined by the President would cost one trillion dollars less over 10 years than would making all the Bush tax cuts permanent, as the GOP proposes.

“Both President Obama and Congressional Republicans have proposed to extend far too many of these unaffordable tax cuts,” said Robert S. McIntyre, director of Citizens for Tax Justice. “But if we have to choose between the Congressional Republicans’ and President Obama’s approach, the President’s proposal is fairer and more responsible.”

The national and state reports are all available at: www.ctj.org/bushtaxcuts2012.php.

The term “Bush tax cuts” refers to income tax cuts and estate tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 and extended several times since then. In 2009, President Obama expanded some parts of these tax cuts that benefit low income and working families. In December of 2010, the President and Congress agreed to extend all of these tax cuts through the end of 2012.

Republicans in Congress have indicated that they would extend all of the tax cuts first enacted in 2001 and 2003, but not the 2009 expansions for lower income families. President Obama wants to extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts only for the first $250,000 a married couple makes annually, or the first $200,000 a single person makes. Obama also wants to extend the 2009 expansions.

The findings from CTJ and ITEP also show:

• Of the tax cuts going to Americans, under Obama’s approach, three percent would go to the poorest 20 percent of Americans, 9.9 percent would go to the middle 20 percent and 11.4 percent would go to the richest one percent.

• Of the tax cuts going to Americans, under the Congressional Republicans’ approach, one percent would go to the poorest 20 percent of Americans, 7.4 percent would go to the middle 20 percent of Americans and 31.8 percent would go to the richest one percent of Americans.

CTJ and ITEP are also releasing state-specific versions of this report showing the specific distribution of the benefits, and amounts of tax cuts, from each approach in each of the fifty states and the District of Columbia. All the reports are at www.ctj.org/bushtaxcuts2012.php.

The report also addresses the economic effects of tax cuts versus direct government spending and cites Moody Analytics research concluding that government spending is more stimulative by a factor of five or more than tax cuts.

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Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), founded in 1979, is a 501 (c)(4) public interest research and advocacy organization focusing on federal, state and local tax policies and their impact upon our nation ( www.ctj.org).

Founded in 1980, the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, non-partisan research organization, based in Washington, DC, that focuses on federal and state tax policy. ITEP's mission is to inform policymakers and the public of the effects of current and proposed tax policies on tax fairness, government budgets, and sound economic policy (www.itepnet.org).