According to this CNN Money article, 47% of American households owe nothing in federal income tax. Without going into a debate about the costs/benefits of a progressive income tax, I think it’s important to realize that it’s hard to have a tax cut for people who don’t pay any tax as it is. So when President Bush wanted to cut federal income taxes (one of the few taxes he had control over), it was hard for him to do it in a way that didn’t give “the rich” more money.