Home > Uncategorized > Trump’s Tax Cuts Results in Less Support for Regressive Taxes. Will That Help or Hurt Schools?

Trump’s Tax Cuts Results in Less Support for Regressive Taxes. Will That Help or Hurt Schools?

October 5, 2020

Yesterday’s NYTimes featured an editorial by Christopher Faricy, an associate professor at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, describing the deep unpopularity of the recent Trump tax reform package. The reason for the unpopularity, according to Faricy, is that it treats upper middle class taxpayers the same way as those who earn less instead of treating them like those who make more. How so?

Because the tax law increased the standard deduction and reduces marginal tax rates, fewer middle-class households will itemize their taxes; those that do will save less money. So the law severs the alliance between the middle class and the wealthy, kicking them out of the first-class cabin where there are major tax benefits to itemize, back to the crowded coach section, where everyone uses the standard deduction.

And the among the tax deductions that are no longer available to the upper-middle class are those for property taxes… the very taxes that fund public education. And how will this impact schools?

Our analysis predicts that as fewer middle-class households claim the regressive tax benefits, these programs will become less popular and politically vulnerable over time.

I assume the antecedent for “these programs” references the programs funded by local and state taxes and I also assume Mr. Faricy knows that this loss of popularity for programs funded by local and state taxes is a feature and not a bug. The GOP wanted to penalize the suburbanites who live in the Northeast knowing that they would never vote for him while simultaneously diminishing the taxes that fund the robust services their local and state governments provide. Presumably every homeowner who sees through this gambit… and if that is the case, it may be that the antecedent for “these programs” is the programmed shift away from the subsidy for regressive taxes that COULD result in tax reform that will shift the tax burden to the wealthiest.

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