There’s been much talk about the Republican tax cuts “for the rich”. What is that exactly?
In the United States there are about 140 million taxpayers. The top 1% would be 1.4 million people. The average annual income of those 1.4 million wealthiest taxpayers is $1.5 million and the reduction in taxes they received averaged $85,000 each. Or multiplying that out, the top richest 1% of taxpayers got a total of about $119 billion dollars in tax reduction.
Using 2002 data from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services website I see that there were 40.4 million Medicare recipients in the US with a per capita expenditure from the Medicare program of $6,677.
If the tax cut that went to those millionaires were used for health care, we could provide health care at the same level we provide for Medicare recipients for an additional 17.8 million Americans who do not have health insurance.
So which is better: giving someone with a million dollar annual income an $85,000 tax break, or providing health care for the 17.8 million poorest Americans?
The President and the Republican Congress seem to think health care is not the most urgent priority.