By Morgan Currier
In today’s news highlights, the Washington Post reports on millionaires who are requesting a tax raise, the Star-Ledger calls out Republicans for suiting up in defense of the wealthy, and the Nevada Public News Service gives local perspective on why residents want to stop giving tax breaks to the wealthiest 2%
Washington Post, Greg Sargent, 8/1/2012
With the House set to vote today on dueling plans for the Bush tax cuts, a group of approximately 100 wealthy progressives — all of whom say they are in the top two percent of earners — have signed a letter calling on Congress to raise their taxes immediately.
“Those of us who are business owners know that restoring taxes on the portion of our profits over $250,000 to Clinton era rates will have no impact on our decisions about whether to hire additional workers…
Congress faces a choice. It can ask the wealthiest 2 percent to limit ourselves to the tax cuts other Americans get — those on the portions of our incomes under $250,000 — so that it can shrink the deficit while continuing to invest in education, infrastructure, clean energy, health care, and rebuilding a strong middle class. Or it can slash investments vital to our nation’s future in order to be even more generous to those of us who need it the least. That shouldn’t be a hard choice.”
The Star-Ledger/ NJ.com [New Jersey], 8/1/2012
When Democrats talk about defending the defenseless, they are usually referring to people: the poor, the elderly. Republicans, meanwhile, are hard at work defending a defenseless policy. For whom? The richest 2 percent of Americans. The other 98 percent have no reason to support extending big tax cuts for the wealthy. Given the size of our deficit, how can we afford to? But try talking sense into House Republicans, as they suit up in full armor to defend the millionaires, like Don Quixote on some aristocratic crusade.
To pay for that, they intend to make lower-income families fork over higher taxes, slash other programs and borrow more. They justify this by telling us that the rich deserve to pay taxes at a lower rate than everyone else because they are “job creators.”
That won’t nearly cover the price tag, of course. Next year alone, the Republican tax plan would cost the nation $68 billion more than Obama’s. That’s what the federal government will spend in 2012 to repair highways and bridges, improve K-12 education, fund Head Start and school breakfast programs for low-income children, ensure clean drinking water and deliver meals to seniors.
Nevada Public News Service, 8/1/2012
Bob Fulkerson, executive director of the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, says the average Nevadan makes about $56,000 a year – and, in his view, clearly needs a tax break. As for those making more than $250,000? Fulkerson says those very few Nevadans are already doing very well.
Linda Turner, a Medicare recipient from Henderson, believes Republican concerns about plans to increase taxes on the wealthy are misplaced because they are not the real job creators.
“It’s only a 3 percent increase for the top bracket. The real job creators are people like me, because we spend our money. Because of us, grocery stores stay in business, or wherever we shop.”
Fulkerson says the group Americans for Tax Fairness has taken a close look at the Republican plan and finds it would give a large break to only a few taxpayers in Nevada. “Incomes over $250,000 are going to get a tax cut of $45,000. Those in the Republican plan who are making under that are going to get a tax break of $1,200. We don’t think that’s fair.”
Follow Americans for Tax Fairness on Twitter and Facebook and tell your friends and family about the importance of ending the Bush tax cuts for the richest 2%. Stay tuned for our post tomorrow about what exactly is going on in the U.S. House of Representatives today, and what it means for the Bush tax cuts for the richest 2%.