Visualizing Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan

As someone who worked 24 years for Gannett Co. Inc., I appreciate people who present information clearly and dramatically in graphic form.  The chart below shows the Tax Policy Center’s analysis of the impact of Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain’s plan to replace the individual income tax, corporate income tax, payroll taxes and estate and gift taxes with a 9 percent national sales tax, a 9 percent business tax and a 9 percent income tax.

The Tax Policy Center, a joint effort of the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, said this would be equivalent to a slightly over 25 percent national sales tax, and analyzed the tax impact on different income groups.  The ROBservations web log graphed out the Tax Policy Center’s analysis as follows.

Double click to enlarge

Nice job, ROBservations.  This is a case where one graph really is worth more than a thousand words.

Here’s another visualization of the Cain tax plan, which breaks down the income groups differently.

Click on 9-9-9 Plan | Herman Cain for President for Cain’s explanation of his tax plan.

Click on TPC Tax Topics | Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 Tax Plan for the Tax Policy Center’s analysis of Cain’s plan.

Click on Cain’s 9-9-9 policy explained with one chart for the original chart in context on the ROBservations web log.

Click on There is no such thing as the 9-9-9 tax plan for Ezra Klein’s analysis on the Washington Post’s Wonkblog.

Click on Iowa Republicans like 9-9-9.  But do they understand it? for Susy Khimm’s reporting on the political impact of Herman Cain’s plan on the Washington Post’s Wonkblog.

I think Herman Cain’s apparent popularity is that he is the Republicans’ latest ABM (Anybody But Mitt) candidate.  It is interesting how, in presidential nominating campaigns in both parties over the years, there are early front-runners who are unsatisfactory to a major segment of party members, but turn out to be unstoppable because opponents can’t come up with a suitable alternative soon enough.

[Update 11/26/11]  In response to Albert Milliron’s comment below, I think the disparate impact of Herman Cain’s tax plan reflects the enormous concentration of wealth in this country, as illustrated by the charts below.

Double click to enlarge

Double click to enlarge

The next chart shows the effective tax rates (including all taxes, not just income taxes) paid by different income groups.

Click to enlarge

The chart does show that when you take all taxes into consideration – income taxes, which fall hardest on the rich as a percentage of their income; residential property taxes, which fall hardest on the middle class; payroll taxes, which fall hardest on wage earners; and sales taxes, which fall hardest on the rich – it is still the case that rich people pay a higher percentage of their income in taxes than poor people.

I don’t think this is unfair.  Gain or loss of a dollar means more to a poor person than a rich person.

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2 Responses to “Visualizing Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan”

  1. kev07wan Says:

    Hopefully Herman Cain, and 9-9-9, will be over now that Gloria Allred’s involved..


  2. Albert Milliron (@AL7KT) Says:

    Based on your fight to attack the Cain plan, you have outlined nicely that the Rich are paying their fair share


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