What Obama’s Tax Returns Tell Us: His Taxes Would Go Up Under His Own Plan

President Obama and Vice President Biden today released their 2011 tax returns, ahead of Tuesday’s tax filing deadline. The returns show that Obama paid a 20.5 percent tax rate last year on $789,674 in income. About half of that income came from Obama’s presidential salary, while the rest came from book royalties.

As White House Press Secretary Jay Carney noted in a blog post, “under the President’s own tax proposals, including the expiration of the high-income tax cuts and limitations on the value of tax preferences for high-income households, he would pay more in taxes.” Obama, indeed, would see his tax rate go up due to his called for expiration of the Bush tax cuts above $250,000 in income. Obama would not, however, have been affected by the Buffett Rule — which he is stumping for this week — in 2011, as he did not have $1 million in income.

The likely Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, meanwhile, would do the opposite with his tax plan, cutting his taxes on his already sky high income. Romney’s first, more restrained tax plan, would have cut his own taxes nearly in half. And that was before he included a 20 percent reduction in the top tax rate. In 2010, Romney paid a 13.9 percent tax rate. He has released his estimated tax bill for 2011, which shows him paying about a 15 percent rate on more than $20 million in income.

Romney also supports the House Republican budget authored by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), which would give millionaires a tax break worth $187,000 on top of the break they would get from extending the Bush tax cuts. The GOP budget, meanwhile, would actually raise taxes on low-income working Americans, according to an analysis released yesterday by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.