For all the analysis that has sprung from Mitt Romney's
stoopid rather imprudent comments, which magazine Mother Jones captured and released earlier this week, it's possible one thing has been lost in the tumult. Mitt Romney just messed with Texas. He just messed with it but good.
According to Tax Foundation research, Texas has the 8th highest rate of residents who pay no income taxes -- you know, that certain species of human who, says Mitt, characterize themselves as victims and take no personal responsibility for their squalid lives. Nearly 40 percent of Texans have no federal tax liability. In the map below it's clear the states who will most likely vote for Mitt (including Texas) are also the states he apparently disdains the most.
What a novel campaign strategy. Who's advising this guy again? Oh, yeah, this dude.
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When Romney said 47 percent of Americans don't pay income taxes, he was apparently tapping the Tax Policy Center, which found that 46.4 percent of Americans in 2011 had either zero or negative tax liability. In other words, people who don't make enough money to fork over anything to the federal government. We think. Tax policy is confusing.
What isn't confusing? A whole bunch of those folks live right here in Texas. The average income per household in the state, according to the U.S. Census Bureau , is around $50,000 per year. Nearly 70 percent of that group doesn't owe any federal income taxes, says the Tax Policy Center. Which means: Mitt Romney just insulted more than two-thirds of average, everyday Texans.
Them fightin' words. Though it's likely his insensitive commentary won't do much to affect anything in the Texas electorate. Marc Campos, a local political consultant, said your good ol' boys in east Texas won't jump sides and vote for Obama -- but they may not rouse from the couch to cast a ballot for Romney. Political apathy will reign. Turnout will plummet, which will make the race here a few points closer, Campos said.
Still, Romney will take the state, experts and polls say. Nothing's going to change that inexorable outcome in Texas. Even though he did mess with us a little.