Report: Workers’ Tax Burden Ends After 197 Days

Monday, 16 Jul 2012 07:09 AM

By Nancy Stanley

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The average American worker earned enough by July 15 to pay their share of the government spending and regulatory burden, translating to having to work for 197 days to pay for all the costs imposed by the government, according to a new report from Americans for Tax Reform.

This year’s "Cost of Government Day" fell three days earlier than last year’s revised date of July 18 and four days earlier than in 2010. In 2002, the date was June 16, 29 days earlier than this year.

Between 1997 and 2008, the Cost of Government Day was never later than June 26. This year marks the fourth year in a row that the day has been in July.

Editor's Note:
Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

Broken down, the average American worker in 2012 had to work for 88 days to pay for federal spending, 40 days to pay for state and local spending and 69 days to cover the costs of government regulations. The corresponding numbers for 2011 were 91 days, 39 days and 71 days, respectively.

“While there is a slight improvement in the number of days worked to pay for federal spending this year, the growth of the government remains the largest threat to American prosperity today,” the report stated.

Connecticut is the state with the latest Cost of Government Day, on Aug. 9, followed by New York and New Jersey, both of which the day falls on Aug. 5.

Tennessee had the earliest day, on June 28, followed by Louisiana and Mississippi, both on June 29.

The report noted that without actions from Congress to avoid the fiscal cliff and without any lasting spending reform, the trend of being earlier than the year before would be temporary. In fact, if the fiscal cliff happens, the Cost of Government Day could be pushed into August or even later permanently.

“We haven’t undone the problems of the Obama presidency, we haven’t gotten back to before he started going crazy on spending, but it has started to recede a little bit,” said Grover Norquist, president and founder of Americans for Tax Reform, The Washington Times reported.

The Cost of Government Day is determined by adding the figures for government spending and an estimate of the compliance costs of government regulations, then this number is divided by the estimated gross domestic product, which equals the percentage of national income consumed by the government. The percentage is then applied to the 365.25 weighted calendar year.

Editor's Note: Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

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