Buttigieg Pushes Wealth Tax: ‘People in This Country Are Not Paying Their Fair Share’

Monday on MSNBC’s “The Last Word,” 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Mayor Pete Buttigieg supported the idea of a wealth tax, arguing that “some people” were not paying their”fair share.”

When asked if he would repeal the Trump tax cuts, Buttigieg said, “Yes, at least the tax cuts on the wealthiest because that has blown a huge hole in the treasury that my generation is going to be forced to pay. We’re going to have to pay for it probably in the form of reduced services if we don’t come up with revenue. There’s no need for some of these giveaways to the wealthiest people in the country. But we also need to rethink the way that our revenue is structured right now. That’s why I think at least three ideas that have been floating out there among many people in the 2020 conversation deserve to be part of a portfolio of revenue for the future. That would include a wealth tax, some reasonable percentage on those who are sitting on the largest amounts of wealth in this country. It would mean a financial transactions tax to deal with the fact that people are, in some cases, making preposterous sums of money off of millisecond transactions that don’t seem to contribute very much to the real economy. If they do, fine, but that needs to be shared with the country so that we can have a more robust infrastructure and education and national security and all of the things that make the accumulation of that kind of wealth possible. And we also need to reconsider the taxes for the income brackets that are making the most.”

He continued, “You know, over the last probably 40 years, Democratic and Republican politicians have accepted what you might call the Reagan consensus, this idea that the only thing you would ever consider doing to taxes is to cut them. And the only argument’s over whose taxes to cut. Obviously, we want to keep taxes low and reasonable, especially for working people struggling to get by and members of the middle class, but we also know that some people in this country are not paying their fair share. And whether it’s individual taxes like some of what I’ve been talking about or making sure we use some kind of instrument, like perhaps sales apportionment, to get a better share of U.S. corporate taxes now being hidden offshore or not appropriately taxed when it comes to global business, we could be doing a lot better to fill the treasury before it has to hit the working and middle class.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN


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