- Days left
Using numbers from the non-partisan Tax Policy Center, the website AlchemyToday came up with a calculator to see how much Barack Obama would raise your taxes. It's a nifty device that should help clarify for people the big differences in economic policy in this election.

Are you making less than $603,000? If so, Obama isn't going to raise your taxes, the data show.

According to a Gallup Poll, 53% of Americans think Obama is going to raise their taxes, compared with just 34% who suspect the same of McCain. That means that at least 48% of Americans don't really understand what Obama is going to do and one-third don't understand what McCain is proposing. Where would so many people get the crazy idea that Obama's secret plan is to raise taxes? Well, it could be because John McCain tells them that every chance he gets.
The Washington Post put together a nifty graphic using the same data. CNNMoney also did a smart analysis of the whole thing. The gist of it is, according to CNNMoney:

McCain: The average taxpayer in every income group would see a lower tax bill, but high-income taxpayers would benefit more than everyone else.

Obama: High-income taxpayers would pay more in taxes, while everyone else's tax bill would be reduced. Those who benefit the most -- in terms of reducing their taxes as a percentage of after-tax income - are in the lowest income groups.


In the simplest terms, McCain is going to cut everybody's taxes, but cut the very richest people's taxes most. Obama is going to cut everybody's taxes except the really rich. As the Tax Policy Center points out, both plans are lousy for the federal debt: Obama's would raise the debt by $2.9 trillion, McCain's by $4.2 trillion.

I wish someone would come up with a better calculator than the alchemy one, one that would let people compare their situation under Obama and McCain. First off, people would see that for the vast majority of Americans -- those making $112,000 and under -- Obama cuts their taxes more than McCain.

Second, a better calculator would account for more than just income. A realistic calculator would ask you where you get your income. Is it from work? Or is it from the stock market? (Which Obama says he wants to raise.) Or is it from an inheritance of more than $3.5 million? And then there's McCain's proposal to tax employer healthcare, but give a tax credit to offset it.

Fiscal policy is really complicated. We could desperately need use a tool to bring it home to people where their own financial interest lies.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Intro to Retirement

Get started early planning for your long term future.

View Course »

How to Buy a Car

How to get the best deal and buy a car with confidence.

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Will Medicare/Medicaid be Impacted by ACA?

The Affordable Care Act put in place significant tax-related programs that impact Medicare and Medicaid, such as increased Medicare taxes on earned and unearned income for high-wage earners, and Medicaid changes that increase the number of insured individuals. Establishing whether you are affected by the ACA-imposed taxes, or are eligible for certain health programs that fall under the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, is determined by filing your income tax.

8 Things You Think Are Tax Deductible That Aren't

There?s a fine line between looking to save money on your taxes and taking deductions that will raise eyebrows at the Internal Revenue Service. Some taxpayers are tripped up by expenses that they assume are tax deductions, but don?t qualify under IRS guidelines. Here are a dozen items that can lead to unpleasant surprises in case of an audit.

Essential Tax Forms for the Affordable Care Act

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also referred to as Obamacare, affects how millions of Americans will prepare their taxes in the new year. The law now includes penalties for all who haven?t obtained health insurance -- and those penalties are expected to be paid at tax time. The ACA also provides tax credits to help people pay for insurance, and you can claim those credits when you file your taxes. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has introduced a number of tax forms to accommodate the ACA.

How to Determine if You Have Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC)

The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, requires most Americans to have health insurance that meets a government standard known as "minimum essential coverage," or MEC. Whether your insurance qualifies as MEC depends not on the plan itself, but on how you obtained your coverage.

What are 1095 Tax Forms for Health Care?

In 2014 the Affordable Health Care Act, also known as Obamacare, introduced three new tax forms relevant to individuals, employers and health insurance providers. They are forms 1095-A, 1095-B and 1095-C. These forms help determine if you need to comply with the new shared responsibility payment, the fee you might have to pay if you don't have health insurance. For individuals who bought insurance through the health care marketplace, this information will help to determine whether you are able to receive an additional premium tax credit or have to pay some back.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum