Pundits throw out all sorts of numbers to explain the Republican defeat in the 2012 presidential election. So here’s our number: $65,000. That is a rough estimate of the household income of the average 2012 voter. Republicans lost because Mitt Romney did not do well enough with this voter or those near him on the income scale.
A group of House Republicans has written a letter to Barack Obama to warn that the immigration bill he supports will have an adverse effect on American workers. The immigration bill will, the letter writers say, lead to an increase in unemployment and poverty, help collapse the middle class, and decrease wages for American citizens.
The Wall Street Journal editors are unhappy about the present correlation of political forces. Who isn't? They're also, I gather, unhappy about "Beltway sages" who, facing the fact that the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of this year, have suggested Republicans accept a modest increase in tax rates for the wealthy while leading the charge to keep taxes from rising for 98 percent of the American people.
Vice President Joe Biden said the middle class "has been buried the last four years" at a campaign event in Charlotte, North Carolina:
"This is deadly earnest, man. This is deadly earnest," Biden said. "How they can justify--how they can justify--raising taxes when the middle class has been buried the last four years... How in Lord's name..."
Of course, Barack Obama has been president the last four years, and Biden has been vice president.
Two months ago, Vice President Joe Biden said on the campaign trail that he is "tired of being called a 'Middle Class Joe.'" But since he's the owner of a home valued at about $2,856,950, and since he's the vice president of the United States, this didn't quite ring true.
Ladies and gentlemen, prepare for battle! The 2012 campaign is shaping up to be a struggle over which candidate best represents the interests and aspirations of the American middle class. Unable to run on his record, President Obama wants to recast the election as a choice between stolid defender of middle-class values and radical pawn of selfish billionaires. We’ll let you figure out who’s who.
By a colossal margin, middle class Americans want Obamacare to be repealed. The latest Rasmussen poll of likely voters shows that, among those who make between $40,000 and $60,000 a year, a whopping 68 percent support the repeal of Ob
Politico reports that Warren Buffett’s idea of tax reform is apparently quite different from President Obama’s. Buffett says he would raise taxes on those with “very high incomes that are taxed very low,” but not on those making annual salaries of $50 million.
In his recently released deficit plan, President Obama lays out the “Buffett Rule” (named, of course, for Warren Buffett, the famous investor and supporter of Obama). The rule, as Obama defines it, is “that people making more than $1 million a year should not pay a smaller share of their income in taxes than middle-class families pay.”
In the New York Times, David Leonhardt discusses what he calls “a popular talking point on cable television and talk radio”—that 47 percent of Americans no longer pay any income tax. Leonhardt grants the point—“The 47 percent figure is not wrong”—but adds, “Over the last 30 years, rates have fallen more for the wealthy, and especially the very wealthy, than for any other group.” But while the notion that something approaching half of all Americans don’t pay income taxes is true, Leonhardt’s claim about tax rates for the wealthy is not.