I listened to President Obama’s State of the Union address, and noted that he commented on Warren Buffett’s secretary’s income tax, and said he had the “Buffett Rule” that is simple math: Warren Buffett should pay taxes at a higher rate than his secretary.
Well Mr. Buffett’s secretary’s income tax forms are off-limits, and neither Buffett nor his secretary has said what she earns. For Warren Buffet’s secretary to pay at the 28 percent rate she would have to earn between $400,000 and $500,000. If Buffett’s secretary earns about $60,000 per year, her effective rate is about 14 percent.
Warren Buffett states his tax rate for 2010 was 11 percent. So Buffett’s secretary would be paying 3 percent more than Buffet. But Buffett’s income already has been taxed at the 30 percent corporate rate, making the rate of tax on Buffett’s income an actual 40 percent. Mitt Romney’s effective tax rate is 13.7 percent for 2010, so Buffett’s secretary would pay three-hundredths of 1 percent more than Romney if she earns about $60,000 per year.
Since Buffett and his secretary have become pawns in Obama’s class warfare, it would be nice for Buffett’s secretary to release her tax returns so we can determine if Obama is correct in his assertion, or once again exposing his ignorance.
David G. Brown