“[W]e need to change our tax code so that people like me, and an awful lot of Members of Congress, pay our fair share of taxes,” said President Obama during his state of the union address.
“When Americans talk about folks like me paying my fair share of taxes, it’s not because they envy the rich. It’s because they understand that when I get tax breaks I don’t need and the country can’t afford, it either adds to the deficit, or somebody else has to make up the difference – like a senior on a fixed income; or a student trying to get through school; or a family trying to make ends meet. That’s not right.”
I reject Obama’s premise in these comments – that wealthier Americans somehow aren’t paying their “fair share” of taxes despite paying one hell of a lot more in taxes than the rest of us – but he is right that when some people avoid taxes it puts upward pressure on taxes for the rest of us.
Like when members of Obama’s own administration skip out on paying over $800,000 in taxes.
A new report just out from the Internal Revenue Service reveals that 36 of President Obama’s executive office staff owe the country $833,970 in back taxes. These people working for Mr. Fair Share apparently haven’t paid any share, let alone their fair share.
Previous reports have shown how well-paid Obama’s White House staff is, with 457 aides pulling down more than $37 million last year. That’s up seven workers and nearly $4 million from the Bush administration’s last year.
Nearly one-third of Obama’s aides make more than $100,000 with 21 being paid the top White House salary of $172,200, each.
The IRS’ 2010 delinquent tax revelations come as part of a required annual agency report on federal employees’ tax compliance. Turns out, an awful lot of folks being paid by taxpayers are not paying their own income taxes.
The Obama administration’s tax bill is just a sliver of the billions in taxes owed by federal employees in general:
From postal workers to congressional staffers, federal workers failed to pay billions in taxes in 2010. According to records released by the Internal Revenue Service, active and retired federal employees and military personnel combined owed $3,420,168,684 in unpaid taxes for 2010, an increase of more than 3 percent over the previous year.
As has been the case in past years, the agency with employees who owe the most in unpaid taxes is the U.S. Postal Service, where 25,640 employees owe nearly $270 million. Employees in the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives owe more the $10 million. Active duty military owe more than $100 million.
Maybe paying a “fair share” ought to start in the White House.