From Think Progress:
...But while the companies are correct that America’s corporate tax rate is statutorily the highest in the world, what they aren’t noting is that few corporations actually pay the 35 percent rate. In fact, even as profits for American corporations hit a 60-year high in 2011, their effective tax rate hit a 40-year low, and the U.S. collects less in taxes as a percent of the total economy than every industrialized country in the world save Iceland. It’s been 45 years since corporations paid the full top tax rate, and 26 American companies avoided taxation altogether over the past four years.Some of RATE’s members do, in fact, pay a rate equal to America’s top corporate tax rate. But corporations as a whole do not, largely because they are keeping record amounts of money in offshore tax havens in countries where they barely do business at all. To top it off, many of the corporations (though not RATE specifically, according to its letter) lobbying for reform are pushing for a “territorial” tax system that would make it even easier for them to shield profits from American taxation while leading to more investment and job creation in foreign countries.