The Tax Policy Center estimates that about 65 percent of households got a tax break on their 2018 incomes – but taxpayers aren’t seeing it that way. “If you’re an American taxpayer, you probably got a tax cut last year. And there’s a good chance you don’t believe it,” Ben Casselman and Jim Tankersley of The New York Times said Monday. A Times survey shows that just 40% of Americans think they got a tax cut last year, and only 20% are sure they did.
Even high earners are skeptical. While nearly 90% of households earning more than $100,000 received a tax cut, less than half (46.4%) said they thought they did.
Casselman and Tankersley cite a sustained messaging effort by liberal groups to discredit the tax cuts as the source of the misperception. But others say the small size of the tax cut for many workers – the middle fifth of earners received about $20 a week on average – and the fact that they were tilted toward the wealthy contributed to the widespread belief that the 2017 tax cuts failed to deliver for the majority of taxpayers.