GOP Spreads Corporate Tax Disinformation, America Fights Back
Corporate taxes are the lowest they have been in decades. They need to pay their fair share of taxes.
The anti–corporate tax dodging movement is growing momentum during a time when GOP leaders such as Eric Cantor, Michele Bachmann and Tim Pawlenty propagate daily the lie that corporations are already overtaxed in America. While corporations claim they’re taxed at 35 percent, their actual effective tax rate is much, much lower after deductions, credits and write-offs.
During the 1950s, the decade in which more people joined the middle class than at any time in history—before or since—corporations paid 49 percent of their profits in taxes. Last year, it was about half that rate, a decidedly more modest 26 percent. In 2010, corporate tax collections totaled $191 billion—down 8 percent from $207 billion as recently as 2000.
Perhaps a more telling yardstick, corporate tax revenue in 2009 came to just 1 percent of gross domestic product—the lowest collection level since 1936, or three-quarters of a century ago. In 2010, it edged up to a puny 1.3 percent—the second-lowest since 1940. Even worse, the shriveled tax collections came at a time when corporations were registering an all-time high in profits. At the end of 2010, corporations posted an annualized profit of $1.65 trillion in the fourth quarter. In other words, the more they made, the less they paid. – Allison Kilkenny