The 2012 election season has seen a lot of rhetoric over middle class Americans. Before we continue, maybe we should determine the average income for a middle class family. According to Mitt Romney, that number falls somewhere under $250,000.
During an interview with George Stephanopoulos, Romney said that his tax plan would not raise taxes on middle-income people.
“No one can say my plan is going to raise taxes on middle-income people, because principle number one is (to) keep the burden down on middle-income taxpayers.”
But what is middle-income? Romney defined middle class income as $200,000 to $250,000 a year and less.
It’s a confusing statement that has left Romney open to criticism.
First, $250,000? According to the Census Bureau the median household income for an American family is just over $50,000. Second, “and less” makes it seem like there’s no lower class. The wealth gap in America continues to grow and Romney’s statement makes it seem like he sees the country as a nation of haves and have nots.
President Obama has been working hard to win the middle class vote and has painted Romney as someone who is completely out of touch with the average American. Romney’s classification of middle class wealth seems to solidify that point.
Of course, there is another way to view Romney’s statements.
According to US News, middle class income falls between $32,000 and $100,000. The top 1% make over $250,000 a year and the top 5% make over $150,000. Romney’s numbers were still off but it wasn’t as drastic as people are making it out to be.
Also, there’s been some discrepancy over what Mitt Romney actually said. When the interview first aired many people had Romney quoted as saying that middle class was between $200,000 and $250,000. But the GOP candidate may have been redefining his estimate mid-sentence, saying between “two hundred thousand… two, two hundred and fifty thousand, and less.”
Romney’s campaign later clarified that he was talking about household income and not individual income. Still, Mitt Romney seems to think that the middle class is about $100,000 richer than they actually are.
What do you think of Mitt Romney’s statements? Does this show how out of touch the GOP candidate is with the American people? Or was Romney just a little high on his estimate?