By: DOTT JOSE on Sabato 14 Agosto 2004 13:11
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - One-third of President Bush (news - web sites)'s tax cuts have gone to the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans, shifting more burden to middle-income taxpayers, congressional analysts said on Friday.
The report by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (news - web sites) and calculations by congressional Democrats based on the CBO findings fueled the debate over the cuts between Bush and his Democratic challenger in November, Sen. John Kerry (news - web sites).
Using the CBO's figures, Democrats in Congress said the top 1 percent, with incomes averaging $1.2 million per year, will receive an average tax cut of $78,460 this year, and have seen their share of the total tax burden fall roughly 2 percentage points to 20.1 percent.
In contrast, the report showed that households in the middle 20 percent, with incomes averaging $57,000 per year, will receive an average cut of $1,090 while their share of the tax burden would move to 10.5 percent from 10.4 percent.
The CBO report said about two-thirds of the benefits from the cuts went to households in the top 20 percent, with an average income of $203,740.
People with earnings in the lowest 20 percent, which averaged $16,620, saw their effective tax rate fall to 5.2 percent from 6.7 percent, the CBO said. But Democrats said that meant their average tax cut was only $250.
Democrats said the CBO calculations, which they requested, confirm the view of independent tax analysts that the tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 have heavily favored the wealthiest taxpayers.