How quickly Americans forget Reagan's tax moves

2012-12-03T00:00:00Z How quickly Americans forget Reagan's tax moves nwitimes.com
December 03, 2012 12:00 am

President Barack Obama is getting all kinds of heat because he wants to raise taxes on the wealthy in our country. It is amazing how people have forgotten that Reagan also raised taxes during his eight years in office.

During Reagan's administration, the top income tax rate decreased from 70 percent in 1981 to 28 percent in 1986. But, to combat a rising deficit and debt burden, Reagan also approved increased payroll taxes and a tax on Social Security benefits for some higher earners.

For many middle income families, this tax increase more than undid any gains from Reagan's income tax cuts.

In 1980, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates, middle income families with children paid 8.2 percent of their income in income taxes, and 9.5 percent in payroll taxes. By 1988, the income tax share was down to 6.6 percent -- but the payroll tax share was up to 11.8 percent, and the combined burden was up, not down.

- Bob Komarowski, Schererville

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