The voices of Tax Policy Center's researchers and staff
Just in time for the presidential election, the Tax Policy Center’s Election Tax Calculator debuts today. We designed it to help taxpayers, analysts, and the media see how Hillary Clinton’s and Donald Trump’s tax plans would affect real families.
You can choose to create a taxpayer profile from scratch or pick one of our six sample households:
- a non-elderly childless couple
- a couple with a child in college
- a couple with two children under age 13
- a single person
- a single person with two children
- a couple over age 65
If you choose one of the sample households, you next pick one of five income levels: low (20th percentile), middle (50th percentile, high (80th percentile), very high (top 1 percent), or highest (top 0.1 percent) and click to see what 2017 federal income and payroll taxes would be under each candidate’s plan and under today’s tax law.
If you want to create your own scenario, you choose the taxpayer’s marital status and age, add children to the family if you want, and enter values for various sources of income and expenses.
Click the “Calculate Tax Now” button and—voila! —you see three tax bills for current law and the candidates’ plans. Another click gets you a detailed breakdown of the calculations.
Want to see another sample case? Scroll back up and try again.
Want to change income or deductions for your own example? Just type in new numbers, and you’ve got another case.
One caution: the calculator doesn’t take into account all possible tax situations or include every piece of the candidates’ tax plans. Making the calculator simple enough to use meant leaving out less common situations and some of the candidates’ proposals don’t fit.
Take the Tax Calculator on a test drive and let us know what you think.
Posts and Comments are solely the opinion of the author and not that of the Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute, or Brookings Institution.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton stands next to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump at the second presidential debate at Washington University, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)