Saturday March 10, 2018
People won't know their true tax liability until next year.
"New calculator to help figure tax withholding," (Reading Eagle, March 1) states, "Millions of Americans are now getting bigger paychecks as a result of the new tax law." Not surprisingly, a New York Times survey finds that more than half of Americans now support the law. Congressional Republicans, looking ahead to fall elections, purposefully set the change in withholding to go into effect now.
But the change in withholding is not a change in the tax. This complex law alters the rates in seven brackets, eliminates some deductions, limits others, gets rid of exemptions and adds other significant features. Most of us won't know our new tax liability until 2019, when we first pay the new rate. That will be after the fall election
Some things we do know now: A large reduction in the income tax rate goes to those earning more than $500,000; the tax rate on corporations drops from 35 percent to 21 percent; the smallest tax rate reduction goes to those who have the smallest incomes; and the law will double the standard deduction, but that benefit will be partly offset by the loss of exemptions, which hurts families with dependent children.
The tax reductions will expire over the next decade. The corporate tax reductions are permanent.
The law will increase the national debt. To offset the loss, Republicans plan to reduce government programs that support health care, education and other needed services.
We need to vote for change in this fall's election.
James D. Boyer
Change in withholding could deceive voters