Trump repeats: “We’re the highest taxed nation in the world.”
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) October 10, 2017
It’s no secret that Donald Trump makes false and misleading claims with regularity (according to the Washington Post, he’s up to over 1,300 instances since Inauguration Day). While Trump most often makes these claims about how Obamacare is failing or to support an easily disprovable foreign policy statement, Trump really likes to claim that the U.S. is the highest taxed nation in the world to defend his calls for massive tax cuts.
President Trump made this claim yet again Tuesday while speaking to the press pool from the White House (oddly, while he was meeting with Henry Kissinger). “The people of this county want tax cuts, they want lower taxes, we’re the highest taxed nation in the world,” Trump said while claiming that his cuts could be the largest in the history of the country. However and as it been pointed out, the U.S. doesn’t have the highest tax rates.
According to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, Denmark, France and Sweden, are among the nations with higher tax rates. In fact, most developed countries’ tax revenue is about 34% relative to their gross domestic product, compared to 26% for the United States. The individual tax burden for Americans is around $14,000 and below average as well, though the President surely knows that. The corporate tax (undoubtedly what Trump really means) is on the high side but is brought to the average range through deductions, per an NBC fact check:
If he is talking about the total amount of taxes paid, then, yes, America’s tax coffers do take in more money than any other nation. But would that be a reasonable measure to back up the claim that the U.S. is the highest-taxed nation in the world? The experts said: No.
Daniel Shaviro, a professor of taxation at New York University Law School, called that measure of the tax burden “nonsensical and meaningless.”
Trump’s repeated utterances of this claim have ramped up since September, so expect to hear it plenty of times as Republicans set to work on passing the tax cuts that Trump has been pushing to achieve.