What If Everybody Paid Their Taxes?

Dan Kloeffler
What If?March 31, 2014

The IRS estimates there is about an 83% compliance rate of Americans paying their federal income taxes. So that means 17% of us as shirking our responsibilities, right? Not exactly.

This compliance rate is based on the amount of revenue, not the number of people that file. And because there is not a standard tax rate, the IRS doesn’t know if its $450 billion shortfall is caused by a handful of really rich Americans, a large group of lower income earners, or some combination in the middle.

With this much revenue being lost, we hit up a few economists – Robert Reich, featured in the documentary, ‘Inequality For All,’ along with Jared Bernstein, Senior Fellow at The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - to get their thoughts on what would happen if everyone paid their taxes.

Check out the latest episode of "What If" to find out what an extra $450 billion could do for America.

Host: Dan Kloeffler
Producer, DP: David Fazekas,
Associate Producer: Stefan Doyno
Editor: Maurice Abbate