Taxpayers say system is unfair; corporate rate now world’s highest

Only 12% of Americans think the U.S. tax system is great, according to a Rasmussen survey
(Daniel Acker / Bloomberg)

You may want to sit down for this one: Americans aren’t happy with the U.S. tax system (though 12% of them think it’s actually the best one in the world).

More than six in 10 Americans say the way the country levies taxes is less than perfect, according to a survey from Rasmussen Reports. More than a quarter aren’t sure how they feel.

Nearly half think that the average American currently pays out at least 30% of their income in taxes, when most believe the ceiling should be more like 20%.

California Gov. Jerry Brown hopes to land a measure on the November ballot that would increase the sales tax and raise the rate for higher earners, with revenue going to schools and to balance the state’s budget.


And as of last Sunday, when Japan reduced its statutory corporate tax rate to 38.01%, the U.S. has the highest rate in the world at 39.2%. Many companies, however, regularly take advantage of tax breaks and end up paying far less.

But that hasn’t quelled debate over a cut in the corporate tax rate, which Republicans think should be trimmed to 25% or less. In February, President Obama called for a 28% top rate and the elimination of many tax breaks.

In the Rasmussen report, roughly half of respondents (though more Democrats than Republicans) claim that fellow taxpayers who earn twice as much as they do likely pay less than twice as much in taxes.

Same thing for those who say that Americans earning half as much shell out less than half as much in taxes (more Republicans in this camp).


Rasmussen surveyed 1,000 people for its survey. With less than two weeks to go before the April 17 deadline this year, more than a third of taxpayers (who are more likely to be men, singles or older people) have yet to file their taxes. Of those, 13% said they plan to get an extension.


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