Two famously high-tax locales would like this particular claim to fame to go away – and don’t worry, they both have plenty of better claims to fame anyway. A new survey shows that a majority of French voters would like their sky-high taxes to come down, while economic data suggests that rich New Yorkers subject to high taxes are likely to vote with their feet by decamping for lower-taxed states following the demise of the unlimited federal tax deduction for state taxes.
- In France the new survey, conducted by pollster Ifop on behalf of Le Journal du Dimanche, found that 82% of respondents wanted the government to lower the national personal income tax, which currently stands at nearly half of income (45%) – admittedly down from 50.2% as recently as 2016 . A large majority also want the French government to scrap the television license fee, another increasingly outdated tax in the age when video is delivered by every digital channel imaginable. By the same token, a somewhat smaller majority (62%) said they want the government to stop its privatization program, suggesting France is not exactly on the cusp of a free market transformation. Many of the demands cited in the Ifop survey align broadly with the grievances of the Yellow Vest movement, which continues to roil the French political scene.
- On the other side of the pond, the imposition of a $10,000 cap for federal deductions of state income tax has politicians and number crunchers in high-tax states worrying about an exodus of high-income individuals to their low-tax counterparts, according to The Financial Times. The concern is particularly intense in New York State, the high-tax state par excellence with income tax rates up to 12.7% when both state and local taxes are taken into account. By contrast states such as Florida have no personal income tax. Earlier this year Governor Andrew Cuomo said the loss of high-income individuals to other states was responsible for a $2.3 billion shortfall: “I fear that Salt is already causing people to leave our state. Less than 100,000 people pay half the taxes. They leave, we have a big problem very quickly.”
- Anyone interested in learning exactly how high-tax states chase away their highest income earners and taxpayers can consult How Money Walks, an online resource maintained by expert and author Travis Brown, which provides detailed figures on the amount of wealth that has moved from high-tax to low-tax states over the last few decades based on census and tax data.