Top Links: The sound and the fury (and the facts) over Obama’s 18.4% tax rate

Updated
Some conservatives are having a good time with President Obama's 18.4% tax return.
Some conservatives are having a good time with President Obama's 18.4% tax return.
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File

Top story: A few conservatives are having a good time hitting President Obama over the 18.4% tax rate he paid in 2012. However, a little context is in order

  • VIDEO: Joe Scarborough said “the hypocrisy is mind boggingly” on his show. (Morning Joe)
  • Matt Drudge got in a tax-related punch, too. (Matt Drudge)
  • Our friends at Fox News handled the issue in their usual, button-down manner. (Mediaite)
  • The one “conservative” not willing to bite on the tax “hypocrisy” charge? Donald Trump. (Mediaite)
  • So how did the Obamas do it? Via tax deductions. Mostly the ones for charitable causes. (NPR)
  • In fact, they gave about 25% of their income to charity. (The New York Times)
  • Obama’s federal budget would impose a 28% cap on deductions. “If the deduction cap were in place, the value of their charitable contributions — their biggest deduction — would have declined by about $7,500.” (NPR, interestingly, puts that figure at about $18,000) (Politico)
  • But here’s the rub. By one estimate for the previous tax year, people in the Obamas’ tax bracket — the top of the very top (call it “The 5%”) — paid an average rate of 16.4% in individual income tax. (Tax Policy Center)
  • Here are the Obamas’ and Bidens’ 2012 tax returns. (White House)
  • Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas preferred to attack the President over using taxpayer dollars to … fly Air Force One!! (Sen. Ted Cruz)
  • “Fun fact: The Biden-negotiated fiscal cliff deal raised tax rates on couples earning $450K+. Obama wanted $250K+. The Bidens made $385K.” (Steven Dennis)

Top Links: The sound and the fury (and the facts) over Obama’s 18.4% tax rate

Updated