The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has an analysis of Governor Scott Walker's proposed tax cut that is illuminating for showing just how far today's leading Republicans are willing to go to avoid being portrayed as cutting taxes on the rich. The analysis was tweeted by Governor Walker, so it seems to be an accurate portrayal, or at least one he does not dispute:
According to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau, the taxpayers with the largest percentage reduction in taxes under Walker's plan are those making between $20,000 and $50,000, with an average tax reduction of just over 3%.
In fact, once taxpayers reach $30,000 in income, their percentage tax decrease shrinks as their income increases. For instance, those making between $250,000 and $300,000 see their taxes drop only 1.9% - the 35,000 Wisconsin taxpayers making over $300,000 will see their taxes reduced by an average of only 0.57%. (The new lower tax rates apply to income earned up to $214,910 for married filers and $161,180 for single filers. For people above those levels, the lower rates apply for income up to those amounts; then the higher, unchanged rates kick in.)...[Emphasis added].
And let's face it, a $332.4 million tax cut ($162.3 million in 2013 and $170.1 million in 2014) on a $68 billion budget isn't going to cause the state's economy to erupt like dropping a Mento into a Diet Coke. It's less than one-half of 1% of the total budget, making it a fairly modest proposal. (It is also accompanied by some more general fund tax reductions, including cuts for health savings accounts.)
Had Walker merely given everyone the same percentage income tax cut, the state's wealthy would have gotten back the same proportion they pay in. Yet Walker dialed back his plan, increasing the percentage tax cut for middle-income taxpayers.
Mr. Walker gets mentioned as a 2016 Republican presidential or vice presidential candidate.