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The “Other” Buffett Rule

The “Other” Buffett Rule

At long last, the “Buffett Rule” is finally ready to be introduced.

Oh, but wait — it’s a Republican version.

Senator John Thune and Congressman Steve Scalise are introduced their own version of the “Buffett Rule” in the chambers, replacing President Barack Obama’s tentative proposal to tax capital gains and investment income at a higher rate to ensure millionaires pay as large of a portion of their annual income in taxes as the middle class does.  In the Thune/Scalise version of the “Buffett Rule,” the IRS would add an extra box to the yearly tax form.  If you feel you don’t pay enough in taxes, you can check the box to pay more.

Thune justified his proposal, saying, “If individuals like Warren Buffett or President Obama are inclined to donate their own personal money toward paying down the federal government’s debt, they ought to have that right to do so voluntarily.”

According to Congressional Republicans, Obama’s “Buffett Rule” is unnecessary overkill.  But the Congressional Research Service says that might not be the case.  Based on their research, about one in four millionaires actually do pay less in taxes proportionally than the middle class does. As Politico reports, “Investment income that is taxed at a preferred rate and the reduced impact of payroll taxes on higher incomes means that 94,500 millionaires pay federal taxes at an effective lower rate than 10.4 million “moderate-income taxpayers” earning less than $100,000 a year. That means about one in four millionaires pay lower federal income tax rates than 10 percent of middle-class households.”

Wonder how many of them would voluntarily check the box?

 

Related Stories:

Millionaire Surtax? Is That Better Than A Buffet Rule?

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106 comments

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7:21PM PDT on Oct 20, 2011

something is wrong here.....

9:51AM PDT on Oct 19, 2011

Wow, didn't have to scroll down very far this time to read the insults and name calling from Diane O. and Paul B. ...you know, the ones who claim they DON'T name call.....more doublespeak and NO sense.....like usual.

9:46AM PDT on Oct 19, 2011

Smoke and mirrors, just what Buffet was counting on. He didn't make his fortune by NOT being able to manipulate people, he KNEW that the Repigletans would amend his proposal to his benefit. Check box? Stupid idea, the cost for changing the forms will far exceed the money generated by this, NOBODY will volunteer to pay more than they have to.....

3:54PM PDT on Oct 16, 2011

I AM NOW ENTIRELY CONVINCED THAT THE REPUBLICANS ARE KNUCKLEHEADS!!!! WHICH PLANET DO THESE CLOWNS COME FROM????? CERTAINLY NOT PLANET EARTH!!! I AM SICK AND TIRED OF THEIR "PUSHING THE ENVELOPE" TACTIC! IT PAINS ME TO SEE PRESIDENT OBAMA SHOT DOWN BY THESE HEARTLESS NINCUMPOOPS OVER AND OVER! I HAVE TO BEG THE QUESTION, "WHO EXACTLY IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES?" NO SPECIAL PRIVILEGES FOR THE RICH. YOU GOT THAT JOHN THUNE AND STEVE SCALISE!!!!!!! I'VE NEVER READ SUCH RIDICULOUS NONSENSE IN MY LIFE.

8:21AM PDT on Oct 16, 2011

An example of how even those having their income taxes increase can benefit from a robust, Clintonesque economy. Say you make $1 million a year (must be nice). If your federal taxes go up from 35% to 39% you'd pay 4% more on that million, or $40,000/year. Say that over an 8 year period of investment in our country's infrastructure the unemployment rate drops to 4%, and with that extra consumer spending the DOW rises to 30,000. This particular hypothetical person has paid out an additional $320,000 over those 8 years, but his stock portfolio, which in this example was valued at $10 million dollars 8 years ago is now, if he invested in an index fund, worth $30 million! I don't know any investor who would not like that type of return on $40K/yr!

Sure it's a hypothetical example, but based not on fantasy but on precedent. Being old enough to remember the Clinton economy it was nice to see Wall Street and Main Street prosper together. We saw what we used to call the American Dream actually unfold before us. Many poor people rose to middle-class, middle-class to rich, the rich got even richer but it was "all good". I'd love to see that again.

8:02AM PDT on Oct 16, 2011

Of course the "you can pay more if YOU want to" attitude ignores the fact that Buffet and many other 1%ers support the other 99% because they are honest enough and care enough about their country to admit that trickle-down "voodoo" economics does not work. Buffet does not hire more people when his taxes go down and fire them when his taxes go up. In fact, investing the revenue from a 2 - 4% tax increase on income over $250K in infrastructure creates jobs, increases GDP, growing the economy, much of this growth being reflected in the market valuation of stocks. Wealthy people own more stocks than middle class people. In a way we saw under Clinton, low unemployment and high GDP growth benefits us ALL. We saw the DOW triple in value under Clinton. How much more wealth is at our disposal as a nation if we have DOW 30,000? Point being even many who are against the Buffet Rule will see gains in their portfolios that FAR EXCEED any extra taxes they pay!

10:17PM PDT on Oct 15, 2011

noted

8:48PM PDT on Oct 15, 2011

Paul B. said: Everything I post can be supported and in most cases directly includes plenty of "factual" information.

well put up or shut up, post verifiable factual information to back up your propaganda,

6:03PM PDT on Oct 15, 2011

Diane O. said: Obama's solutions enhanced this recession to such a degree that he shut down spending across the country...both large corporations and regular Americans. They saw the uncertainty of their future before them in ObamaCare and higher taxes for those earning over $250,000 a year so they simply stopped hiring and stopped spending.

sheer propaganda, the american people quit spending because they have no money to spend, their uncertainty has nothing to do with obamacare you idiot, the ones who still have jobs are afraid of losing them. it has nothing to do with obama's policies and everything to do with the fact that the republiCONS ran the economy into crisis mode and have blocked any policy obama tried to enact; good or bad. the only policy they have offered is the only solution they have to any problem; more tax cuts to the rich. corporations quit hiring because they found it more advantageous to hold the economy hostage until they get what they want, total control of government and our personal lives. it's called facism.

5:47PM PDT on Oct 15, 2011

Diane O. said: Republicans absolutely want solutions. The first hurdle is to get the debt under control

again you show your ignorance. if this were true, then the last 3 republiCON administrations wouldn't have spent like drunken sailors with a credit card in a whore house. republiCONS are only against deficit spending when the other party is doing the spending.

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