Guy Benson

If Romney emerges as the Republican nominee -- or even if he stays in the race for the long haul, as anticipated -- expect to hear a variant of this argument a lot (via Breitbart):

Rep. Sewell is wrong on several points, natch -- and you just know West was champing at the bit to jump in and correct her.  First, Romney's total tax bill + charitable donations tab = forty-two percent of his income.  Romney's sin, in the Left's eyes, is that so much of that money ($7 million in the last two years alone) didn't go to the government.  Second, "most of Americans" are not paying a 28 or 30 percent effective rate.  AEI's Jim Pethokoukis quotes Tax Policy Center data to refute this specious point:

While Romney’s tax rate is—in his own words—”probably closer to 15 percent than anything,” that’s still higher than the 8.2 percent average total effective income tax rate (as of 2010) of U.S. households (once you factor in various tax credits). Indeed, nearly half of U.S. households pay no income tax at all. Their average effective tax rate is actually negative. Even if you add in the payroll tax, the effective tax rate of the middle fifth of U.S. taxpayers is 12.8 percent.

Ten months of this stuff, straight ahead.  Republican push-back needs to be focused and clear.  This is a pretty good template for that effort.

Guy Benson

Guy Benson is's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography