Here’s Gene Sperling, Bill Clinton’s and Barack Obama’s economic advisor, on Republican Party Presidential candidate Donald Trump’s tax proposal.
If you look at how [Trump’s] tax code has been judged, almost 90% went to the top 1%. What he has doubled down on is this ‘15% solution’. That means that not only will the biggest companies pay 15%, but everybody who has any type of pass-through income. More than half of the 400 richest people in the U.S. have pass-through income[.]
Anybody who has any kind of business income, whether you’re a consultant, a lobbyist, a hedge fund manager, investment banker, or corporate lawyer, you would now pay 15%, lower than most middle-income families. The largest multi-national companies that people think have paid too little would pay 15%.
Never mind that Warren Buffet already, proudly, pays only a bit more than those 15% (and while he demands that everyone like him should pay more, he refuses to make a donation to the Treasury—insisting that his views be imposed on those who disagree). Never mind, either, that with our current gerrymandered tax code, folks like those 400 are driven to the breaks and deductions that lower the investment income portion of their tax bill.
Leaving aside Sperling’s politically motivated exaggeration about those 90%, here are some actual facts.
The top 1% of Americans in income pay nearly 47% of US income taxes—even after adjusting for capital gains and other investment-related income.
The top 20% pay roughly 84%% of US income taxes.
The bottom 50% pay roughly 4% of US income taxes.
It’s obvious to anyone with a 3rd grade lesson in arithmetic that any across-the-board cut in taxes—or even any cut that merely lowers tax rates without materially affecting the tax brackets—is going to yield a bigger dollar cut for the better off. Sperling surely has at least that level of training in arithmetic.
The Left always demands that the rich should pay their fair share, but the Left always refuses to say what that fair share is. Except per Sperling the Left insists, tacitly, that 47% or even 84% isn’t it.