April 17th, 2010
07:37 AM ET

Dear President Obama #453: Our taxes are lower? Well, let's see...

Reporter's Note: President Obama is hearing a lot of talk about taxes these days. And now he can read about the subject too in my latest letter to the White House.

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Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Dear Mr. President,

I have been listening to this vigorous argument (especially by Democrats) that taxes are lower these days despite the uproar to the contrary from Republicans and Tea Party types. The implication is along the lines of, “See how silly people can be? Why they are actually paying less tax and yet they foolishly think they are paying more! What a bunch of ingrates…”

Enough experts on the matter agree this that is true, that I started wondering: If that’s the case, then why are so many people convinced it’s not? I have a great deal of faith in the wisdom of the American populace (a viewpoint which I suspect a good many in the political crowd here do not share) so I am not willing to say that they are simply being obstinate. So after some consideration, I think I have come up with some ideas about why people feel this way.

First, some people are actually angry about taxes that are coming…not taxes that are already here. Let’s face it, people know that some tax cuts are expiring, that higher taxes are in the runway approach for wealthier folks to pay for your health plan, and plenty of voters suspect that you and your fellow Dems are going to get pretty itchy to pull the “new tax trigger” if the deficit keeps soaring. So they are wrong to say taxes are higher now…but it’s not altogether unreasonable for them to fear higher taxes are on the way.