Is James B. Stewart paying the highest tax rate in America?
Famous author and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist James B. Stewart added up all the taxes he paid in one year, and he was stunned to learn his tax rate is an astonishing 74%.
How's that for "paying his fair share?"
Via the NYT:
In the many years I’ve been paying income taxes, I’ve never actually done the math to calculate my tax rate. Until now.Read his full piece here.
After all, Debbie Bosanek, Warren Buffett’s secretary, earned a seat in the limelight next to the first lady, Michelle Obama, at the State of the Union address for paying what ABC News reported was a tax rate of 35.8 percent. It isn’t clear what Ms. Bosanek meant by 35.8 percent — whether that’s her marginal federal tax rate or total tax rate, or whether she included the Nebraska state income tax.
At the other end of the spectrum, the Republican candidate Mitt Romney released his 2010 tax returns that showed he paid federal income tax of just over $3 million, 13.9 percent of his adjusted gross income of $21.7 million, or 17.5 percent of his taxable income of $17.1 million.
So with all the focus on tax rates, I sat down with my 2010 returns, calculator in hand. I’m still reeling from the results.
I paid 24 percent of my adjusted gross income in federal taxes and 37 percent in combined federal, state and local income taxes. I paid 49 percent of my taxable income in federal income tax, and 74 percent of my taxable income in combined federal, state and local income taxes. My totals include federal payroll and self-employment taxes.
When I reported the results to a few prominent tax experts, they were initially incredulous. “That’s very, very high,” said Robert Willens, a tax lawyer. “Congratulations.”