400 Richest Americans Pay Only 18% Tax Rate

| by Mark Berman Opposing Views

If politicians really want to dig their way out of this debt ceiling mess, they should look to the ridiculously low tax rate paid by the 400 richest Americans. On average their tax rate is 18%, Wall Street financier Steve Rattner said on MSNBC on Monday.

Forbes reports that the reason is because of the Bush tax cuts, which reduced the tax rate on capital gains and dividends to 15%.

Another expert said if those tax breaks and other loopholes were closed, the country would be fine.

"If there is political will, the political parties can very easily find a trillion dollars just in the tax code," said Ron Weiner, resident of RDM Financial Group.

Forbes writes:

Paul Dietrich, managing director at Foxhall Capital Management, has told Forbes a few times in previous interviews that the US does not have a spending problem per se; it has a revenue problem. And one way to bring in revenue without raising taxes is to close tax breaks and tax loopholes for corporations.

That is not likely to happen, as Republicans are fighting tooth and nail not to raises taxes on anyone, especially the rich -- many of whom just so happen to be Republican voters.

The GOP claims raising taxes on corporations would cost jobs and with unemployment already high, that would hurt the struggling economy even further.