80% of Americans Bothered Corporations, Wealthy Don't Pay 'Fair Share' of Taxes: Poll

Eighty percent of Americans said the feeling that some corporations and wealthy people don't pay their "fair share" of taxes is a significant bother to them, with 59 percent of recently surveyed U.S. adults saying it bothers them "a lot."

Only a tiny, single-digit percentage of Americans said they are not at all bothered that top-tier corporations and some wealthy individuals pay too little in taxes each year, a newly published Pew Research Center survey finds.

Twelve percent of Americans overall said this level of inequality doesn't bother them "much," but Democrat-leaning voters are twice as likely than GOP-leaning voters (76 percent versus 38 percent) to say they are bothered "a lot" by a tax system that many believe disproportionately burdens people in lower income levels.

President Joe Biden's proposed infrastructure package draws from increased taxes on individuals making more than $400,000 each year. Additionally, his plan seeks revenue by closing tax loopholes for large corporations that pay zero dollars in taxes as well as raising the corporate tax rate to at least 25 percent, up from 21.

Only 25 percent of Democrats surveyed said they are significantly bothered by the taxes they personally pay, compared to 41 percent of Republicans. Similarly, 78 percent of Democrats said wealthy people don't pay their fair share of taxes, versus 36 percent of Republicans who agree.

The Pew survey conducted among 5,109 U.S. adults between April 5 and April 11 found wide partisan divides in terms of taxes and feelings of fairness.

Exactly half of Democrats said they think they pay the "right amount" of taxes.

About one-third of Americans as a whole said they are at least somewhat "bothered" that poor people don't pay enough taxes each year compared to wealthier individuals. Seventeen percent of GOP-leaning voters and 10 percent of Democrat-leaning voters said some poorer Americans don't pay enough taxes.

One area where Americans are in relatively large agreement is their annoyance with the complexity of the current U.S. tax system. An overwhelming majority of adults surveyed, 82 percent, said they are at least somewhat bothered by the complexity of the U.S. tax code.

Among middle-income Americans, a 54 percent majority said they personally pay more than their fair share of taxes to the government, compared to a similar 52 percent of upper income adults who said the same. About 42 percent of each income group said they pay the "right amount." Among Republicans, 59 percent said their share of the tax burden is too great, while 35 percent said they pay the right amount.

Seventy-one percent of upper-income Republicans said they pay too much in taxes, compared to 41 percent of lower-income GOP-leaning Americans, the survey found.

An April 2020 Gallup poll found 59 percent of U.S. adults said the amount of taxes they're paying is "fair," compared to 39 percent who said it is not fair. In April 2016, only 50 percent of those surveyed said the amount they're paying is fair, compared to 47 percent who said it's not fair.

Newsweek reached out to the IRS offices for any reaction to the latest Pew survey Saturday morning.

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Demonstrator Randall Grey protests a taxation of the wealthy during a rally at Occupy Wall Street San Diego on Thursday, October 13, 2011 in San Diego, California. Protesters around the United States are staging rallies to protest greedy corporations, bank bailouts , taxing the wealthy and a variety of other economic issues as America's jobless rate remains on shaky ground. SANDY HUFFAKER / Contributor/Getty Images