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Orrin Hatch: The 'Poor' Should Do More To Shrink Debt, Not The Rich
WASHINGTON -- Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) voted against beginning debate on a measure that would have the Senate declare the rich should share the pain of debt reduction Thursday, a day after arguing that it's the poor and middle class who need to do more.
"I hear how they're so caring for the poor and so forth," Hatch said in remarks on the Senate floor Wednesday, in reference to Democrats. "The poor need jobs! And they also need to share some of the responsibility."
But it was Hatch whose remarks Wednesday raised the idea that the wealthy are already doing too much, even as the nation's effective tax rates are at modern lows since the Bush administration slashed rates in 2001 and 2003. In his view, it seems, the middle class and poor should be picking up the slack.
"The top 1 percent of the so-called wealthy pay 38 percent of all income tax. The top 10 percent are paying 70 percent of all income tax," Hatch said. "The top 50 percent pay somewhere near 98 percent of all income taxes. 51 percent don't pay anything," Hatch said, suggesting the payroll taxes that the poor and middle classes pay towards Social Security yields them an especially generous benefit.
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