In her Nov. 14 column (“Republican tax cuts will have some crying in their beer”) Debra J. Saunders raves about White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders for likening U.S. federal tax policy to a bar tab arrangement set up by ten reporters. This happened at a press briefing.
You would think a professional opinion journalist could do a better job of unpacking a topic. Why, for example, weren’t payroll taxes addressed in her column? The payroll tax is 15.3 percent on the first $120,000 of earned income. Above that, only 2.9 percent (the Medicare portion) is withheld.
This reduction offsets much of what the highest income tax bracket captures from high-salaried personnel. The press secretary’s beloved populist fable is less compelling in light of other relevant facts.