(Image source: The White House)

BY CHRISTINA HARTMAN

Amid the ongoing debate over tax rates for America’s wealthiest — President Obama has often repeated this pledge:

OBAMA: “I am not going to ask students and seniors and middle-class families to pay down the entire deficit while people like me, making over $250,000, aren't asked to pay a dime more in taxes. I'm not going to do that.”

The Bush-era tax cuts are set to expire at the end of the year, and while Republicans want to keep rates low for everyone, Democrats say the wealthiest can afford to pay more. And by wealthiest — President Obama has said he means those families making more than $250,000 annually.

But in analysis for The New York Times, Catherine Rampell and Binyamin Appelbaum say — it’s actually more like those make more than $300,000.

That’s because of deductions like mortgage-interest payments and charitable giving, which makes less of their income taxable.

So in reality, reports The Times, only 32 percent of those making $250,000-$300,000 would see increased tax rates under President Obama’s proposal.

Meantime, leaders of both parties are working on a palatable deal to reduce the deficit in the face of a looming “fiscal cliff” of severe across-the-board spending cuts and tax increases. The White House has said without an increase of taxes for the wealthy, there IS no deal.

TREASURY SECRETARY TIMOTHY GEITHNER, VIA CNN: “If Republicans are not willing to let rates go back up... there will not be an agreement.”

Friday House Speaker John Boehner appeared to show flexibility in the rates debate — when asked by a reporter he didn’t outright say no. Though in a later statement he clarified:

“As I've said many, many, many times: I oppose tax rate increases... That has not changed, and will not change.”

If lawmakers can’t come up with a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, taxes are expected to go up on almost every American family.

Obama Tax Rate Cut-Off Closer to $300,000

by Christina Hartman
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Transcript
Dec 7, 2012

Obama Tax Rate Cut-Off Closer to $300,000

(Image source: The White House)

BY CHRISTINA HARTMAN

Amid the ongoing debate over tax rates for America’s wealthiest — President Obama has often repeated this pledge:

OBAMA: “I am not going to ask students and seniors and middle-class families to pay down the entire deficit while people like me, making over $250,000, aren't asked to pay a dime more in taxes. I'm not going to do that.”

The Bush-era tax cuts are set to expire at the end of the year, and while Republicans want to keep rates low for everyone, Democrats say the wealthiest can afford to pay more. And by wealthiest — President Obama has said he means those families making more than $250,000 annually.

But in analysis for The New York Times, Catherine Rampell and Binyamin Appelbaum say — it’s actually more like those make more than $300,000.

That’s because of deductions like mortgage-interest payments and charitable giving, which makes less of their income taxable.

So in reality, reports The Times, only 32 percent of those making $250,000-$300,000 would see increased tax rates under President Obama’s proposal.

Meantime, leaders of both parties are working on a palatable deal to reduce the deficit in the face of a looming “fiscal cliff” of severe across-the-board spending cuts and tax increases. The White House has said without an increase of taxes for the wealthy, there IS no deal.

TREASURY SECRETARY TIMOTHY GEITHNER, VIA CNN: “If Republicans are not willing to let rates go back up... there will not be an agreement.”

Friday House Speaker John Boehner appeared to show flexibility in the rates debate — when asked by a reporter he didn’t outright say no. Though in a later statement he clarified:

“As I've said many, many, many times: I oppose tax rate increases... That has not changed, and will not change.”

If lawmakers can’t come up with a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, taxes are expected to go up on almost every American family.

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