Republicans continue to align themselves with the wealthiest of the nation in arguing for an extension of the Bush-era tax cuts. The GOP calls it a “massive tax increase” if the tax cuts are not extended while economists argue that it’s not a tax increase and needed to further improve the economy. Now, up to 40 millionaires have launched a website and campaign to tell the President and Congress to end the tax cuts — inviting higher tax rates for the wealthy.
The group, Patriotic Millionaires for Fiscal Strength, includes 40 of the nation’s top millionaires who are asking President Obama to allow the tax cuts for those who make more than $1,000,000 per year to expire and to extend the cuts for the middle class only.
The group’s official statement:
“For the fiscal health of our nation and the well-being of our fellow citizens, we ask that you allow tax cuts on incomes over $1,000,000 to expire at the end of this year as scheduled. We make this request as loyal citizens who now or in the past earned an income of $1,000,000 per year or more.
We have done very well over the last several years. Now, during our nation’s moment of need, we are eager to do our fair share. We don’t need more tax cuts, and we understand that cutting our taxes will increase the deficit and the debt burden carried by other taxpayers. The country needs to meet its financial obligations in a just and responsible way.”
Democrats in the U.S. Senate have postponed debate on the issue until after the Thanksgiving holiday but it remains uncertain whether a vote can be reached in the brief window before Congress adjourns for Christmas.
Some interesting facts about wealthy tax rates and cuts:
- Only 375,000 Americans have incomes of over $1,000,000
- Between 1979 and 2007, incomes for the wealthiest 1% of Americans rose by 281%
- During the Great Depression, millionaires had a top marginal tax rate of 68%
- In 1963, millionaires had a top marginal tax rate of 91%
- In 1976, millionaires had a top marginal tax rate of 70%
- Today, millionaires have a top marginal tax rate of 35%
- Reducing the income tax on top earners is one of the most inefficient ways to grow the economy according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office
- 44% of the politicians in Congress are millionaires
- The tax cuts were never meant to be permanent
- Letting tax cuts for the top 2% expire as scheduled would pay down the debt by $700 billion over the next 10 years
I take my hat off to this group of millionaires. Their action shows true patriotism and honesty in the face of so much posturing and hot air on Capitol Hill.