Government policies effectively redistributed more than $2 trillion in income from the top 40 percent of American society to the bottom 60 percent in 2012, according to a new study from the nonpartisan Tax Foundation.
The study tracked the beneficiaries of government spending programs largely paid for by taxpayers who are not very big beneficiaries of those programs.
Families in the top 1 percent shouldered nearly half of the more than$2 trillion that was redistributed last year.
The study found that the country’s lowest-income families receive $5.28 in government spending for every $1 they pay in taxes. Highest-income families only receive back 25 cents in government spending for every dollar of taxes they pay.
“So little time, so much to redistribute,” Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney joked at the Al Smith Dinner during the 2012 election, referring to President Barack Obama’s economic worldview. According to the Tax Foundation, the joke was on people like him.