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Josh Barro

Let's End the 47% Nonpayer Nonsense

Mitt Romney may have killed his campaign by saying that President Barack Obama's base is the 47 percent of Americans who are freeloading, non-income-tax-paying losers. With any luck, he also killed the stupid Republican talking point about "nonpayers."

Tax collections at all levels of government will total about $4 trillion this year. Of that, just $1.1 trillion will come from the federal income tax, which is by far the most progressive major component of the tax system.