Phil Mickelson — who made over $60.5 million last year for swinging a golf club, according to Sports Illustrated* — has doubled back on comments he made yesterday regarding the oppressive taxing his income has received.
Yesterday, Mickelson said he might consider “drastic changes,” because he “[happened] to be in that zone that has been targeted both federally and by the state.” Lefty estimated his total tax rate –after state, federal, income, Social Security, and disability taxes– to be at “62, 63 percent.” Which is, admittedly, a lot.
Mickelson’s mistake, however, was grumbling about said tax rate in public, since, you know, he makes so much goddamn money, ridiculous tax rate notwithstanding. Alluding to retirement, or a possible self-imposed decrease in tournaments per year –which is what Mickelson did when he mentioned those “drastic changes”– wasn’t the most nimble of public maneuverings.
But, having seemingly realized that most Americans don’t make $22.39 million before taxes, much less after them, Mickelson pulled back today.
“I know I have my usual pre-tournament press conference scheduled this week but I felt I needed to address the comments I made following the Humana Challenge now.
“I absolutely love what I do. I love and appreciate the game of golf and the people who surround it. I’m as motivated as I’ve ever been to work on my game, to compete and to win championships.
“Right now, I’m like many Americans who are trying to understand the new tax laws. I’ve been learning a lot over the last few months and talking with people who are trying to help me make intelligent and informed decisions. I certainly don’t have a definitive plan at this time, but like everyone else I want to make decisions that are best for my future and my family.
“Finances and taxes are a personal matter and I should not have made my opinions on them public. I apologize to those I have upset or insulted and assure you I intend to not let it happen again.”
*[Note: Our post last night had Phil’s 2012 take-home at $47.8 million, based on numbers from Forbes.]