Monday, September 19, 2011

Obama's debt reduction plan to call for tax increases

Polls have consistently shown that Americans back a tax hike on the plutocracy, and it looks like President Obama is again poised to seize the bully pulpit:

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- President Obama unveiled a plan on Monday to cut the national debt by roughly $3 trillion over the next decade.

Obama's plan reflects his vision for how best to put the country on a more fiscally sustainable course, so it is different in nature than the kind of legislative compromise he was trying to broker this summer during thedebt-ceiling debate, a senior administration official said.

A driving principle behind the proposal is that high-income individuals and corporations should pay more in taxes than they do currently so that they will bear some of the burden of debt reduction going forward.

Indeed, in remarks on Monday morning, the president threatened to veto any debt-reduction legislation that cuts benefits and doesn't include higher taxes on the wealthy. "I will not support any plan that puts all the burden on ordinary Americans," he said.

Obama even introduced the "Buffett Rule" for millionaires -- named after investor Warren Buffett, who has frequently argued that the very rich are not taxed enough.

The president's debt reduction proposal is likely to placate -- at least a little -- those in his Democratic base who have been adamant that they want the rich to pay more and they don't want Medicare or Social Security benefits hit.

Many within Obama's base gave him flak for being unable to secure the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts, which is how the President plans to raise more than half of the $1.5 trillion in new revenue to cut the deficit. But this time around, Republicans cannot block his efforts by threatening debt-ceiling inaction or withholding unemployment benefits. This time the GOP will have to argue that the haves should continue having at the expense of the have-nots without the aid of blackmail - and sadly, it's already begun:

Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) appeared on MSNBC with Chris Jansing this morning to attack President Obama’s new deficit reduction plan, which includes some tax increases on the wealthy. Taking up the typical GOP talking point, Fleming said raising taxes on wealthy “job creators” is a terrible idea that kills jobs because many of these people are small business owners who pay taxes through personal income rates.

Fleming is himself a businesses owner, so Jansing asked, “If you have to pay more in taxes, you would get rid of some of those employees?” Fleming responded by saying that while his businesses made $6.3 million last year, after you “pay 500 employees, you pay rent, you pay equipment, and food,” his profits “a mere fraction of that” — “by the time I feed my family, I have maybe $400,000 left over.”

How much could you buy with $400,000 in your pocket? If you're John Fleming, it would appear not nearly enough.

No comments:

Post a Comment

No to the Status Quo! News and Opinion Blogs

Blogger Widgets