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The Tax Reform Disinformation Campaign: Americans Falsely Think Their Taxes Will Rise

TOPSHOT - The Capitol Christmas tree is lit during a ceremony on the West Front of the US Capitol in Washington, DC on December 6, 2017. The Engelmann Spruce from the Kootenai National Forest in Montana will be lit from nightfall to 11 p.m. through January 1, 2018. / AFP …
AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN
JOHN CARNEY

It is astonishing how American voters have come to be misinformed about tax reform.

Here are the facts. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that most Americans will have their taxes cut by Republican proposals to reform the tax code. A few Americans–roughly 8 percent–will see their tax bills rise, largely due to the elimination of deductions and closing loopholes.

Yet polls show that Americans do not understand the Republican tax proposals. A stunning 41 percent of voters says that tax reform will increase their taxes, while just 20 percent say their taxes will fall, according to according to the most recent Quinnipiac poll.

So far there appears to be little work being done by news outlets to correct this false alarm on tax reform. To the contrary, the media is reporting that tax reform is very unpopular.

This may also be a sign of just how unpopular the Republican brand has become. People may be willing to believe falsehoods about tax reform because they think the GOP is a party for big business and the wealthy.

The point is that we’re looking at a highly successful disinformation campaign, which works because the media do not have an interest in getting the truth across.

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