Meet the Joneses, Part I: Taxes

For the first in a multipart series, "Good Morning America" has scoured the country in search of a few representatives of the typical American family to see how the current administration's tax policies have affected their lives and how a new president might change things.

The family of Evan and Amanda Jones fits the bill perfectly.

The Joneses have two children. The family spends the average amount of time each day cooking and using the Internet, and drinks the type of milk that most Americans drink -- whole.

The Joneses also make $70,000 a year and pay $2,700 in federal taxes.

"Taxes are through the roof," Amanda told "Good Morning America." So they have been forced to cope.

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"We don't eat out as much," Evan said. "We don't have the extra money to maybe go out to the movies. The dollar's just not going as far as it used to."

Now, the Joneses are looking to a new president for help.

Taxing Questions for Obama

According to the Obama campaign, a president Obama would help lower the family's taxes through a series of targeted credits on things like retirement savings and payroll taxes.

"[Obama] thinks they should get tax relief, absolutely," Austan Goolsbee, Obama's senior economic adviser, said of the Jones family in an interview with "Good Morning America." "They're right in the center of the range of the 90 to 95 percent of workers who are going to get a tax cut under the Obama plan."

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According to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, that is true. If Obama's plan is enacted, the Joneses stand to save about $1,300, or half of their tax bill.

What remains to be seen, however, is how Obama would fund such a policy, said Robertson Williams of the Tax Policy Center.

"His proposed cuts in spending would not be enough to offset his reduction in revenue. He'd likely make the deficit worse than it currently is," Williams said.

Another way Obama plans to make up the difference in the tax cuts for those earning around what the Joneses make is to repeal tax cuts for families making more than $200,000 a year.

"The high income people's taxes would go back to what they were in the '90s," Goolsbee said. "That would be higher than they are today."

But Goolsbee is careful not to say that Obama supports a tax increase.

"The reason that I don't say 'raising taxes' [is] these were the rates at a time when the economy was doing very well," he said. "So it's not going out and finding people and raising their taxes to rates that are completely unheard of."

For Evan and Amanda Jones, however, they just want something to be done.

"I think everybody's looking for something new, something different," Evan Jones said.

"Good Morning America" will be examining McCain's plans on various topics in relation to the average American family next week.

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