This has been the Year of Percentages. It started off with the Occupy movement, which declared “we are the 99 percent,” as they railed against the 1 percent. Then, at a private fundraiser, Mitt Romney bad-mouthed the 47 percent who don’t pay federal income taxes. Then Romney lost to President Obama, who campaigned on a pledge to raise taxes on the top 2 percent — individuals earning more than $200,000 a year or couples earning more than $250,000 — while leaving the rest of us alone.
As the year draws to a close, Republicans are fighting that plan. Obama is at an impasse. If they fail to reach a deal, taxes will automatically go up for everyone. Which brings me to perhaps the most important — and least talked about — group of all: the 20 percent.