Everyone who works pays taxes. Bare minimum, they are required to contribute the social security portion, even if they set their withholding so high that nothing else comes out. People may get money back in a refund, they may even get more than they put in if they qualify for EIC, but they don't get it immediately. The money that is paid in goes into accts where it earns interest. For the time it is in the possession of the government, it is the government's money to use.
On the other hand there are tax-exempt institutions. They do not pay anything to begin with. They supply no money with which the government may collect interest or apply towards payments in the interim year.
When X% of people get back as much or more than they paid in when they file their return, it does not mean the same as not paying taxes, any more than paying your gas bill and then getting a refund later because they found a billing error means the same as not paying your gas bill - if you hadn't paid you'd be disconnected and never get the refund in the first place. If you don't pay taxes, you get a call from the IRS, and there is no refund to exceed the amount you paid in.
So with that in mind, why are people so quick to group people who work 40 hrs a week for a lower wage than others in the same category as a church which contributes nothing at any time to the tax base?
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