Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said “I want to have middle income pay less, and I want to have even upper middle income, and even in some cases, people that are pretty wealthy, pay less,” and “I’m not looking to increase taxes,” but criticized “hedge fund guys” who are “paying very little tax” or “no tax,” should “pay some tax” on Tuesday’s “Sean Hannity Show.”
Host Sean Hannity began by stating that he pays between federal and state taxes in New York, that he said lack the “major deductions” a lot of people have. Trump said that the 62% rate Hannity says he pays after everything is taken into account is “out of control.”
Trump, after stating New York state should have done fracking and this would have lowered taxes, said, “If you look at some of the people, the middle income people, Sean, and upper middle income, even wealthy, taxes are terrible, the taxes are too high. And specifically, I’m talking about hedge fund guys, who I know, that are all supporting and giving a lot of money to Jeb Bush and to Hillary Clinton because you know, Hillary can talk all she wants, but the people that she’s supporting and that are really supporting her, many hedge fund guys, I could name them all. I know most of them. I probably know all of them. But I know most of them. They’re making tremendous amounts of money, and they’re paying almost — they’re paying very little tax. In some cases, they’re paying no tax.”
He continued that hedge funders are “making hundreds of millions of dollars, and paying very very little tax, in some cases, no tax. Okay, now you take a middle income person, or an upper middle income person, but take a guy making 50, 60, 70 thousand dollars a year, and they have a return that’s so complicated they have to hire H&R Block, who shouldn’t even be hired. It’s just a ridiculous situation. So, I’m actually saying I want to lower taxes, but I want to make — I want to have middle income pay less, and I want to have even upper middle income, and even in some cases, people that are pretty wealthy, pay less, but you’ve got to have — and I use the hedge fund guys as the ultimate example. They’re making a fortune, and they’re not — they’re paying very little tax.”
When asked if how he would change the tax code, Trump stated, “I can go with various taxes. I know all about Fair Tax. I know all about flat tax. I think a flat tax has got certain advantages, but you do need graduation, you know when you have a very wealthy person paying the exact same amount that’s making a lot less money, there’s something wrong. Now, you could also leave it the way it is, but simplify it greatly. I mean — and I’m talking about greatly, where anybody can do an easy tax return, and keep a certain level. Now, I’m going to be coming out in about three or four weeks with a plan that I think people are going to really like. We’re looking at reductions in taxes. You know, I’m not looking to increase taxes. But I think that a hedge fund guy who’s making 250 million dollars in one year [should] pay some tax.”
Trump did add that government spends too much and denounced Common Core, and there could be big cuts to the Department of Education and EPA.
Later, he stated of his past tax proposals, “What I wanted to do, and I didn’t say it as a proposal, I said it as something that I would be willing to do, I would have taken a little chunk of my worth, which was a small percentage, a very small percentage, to pay the national debt off. And I said I would do it, if other people would do it, I sure as hell would be willing to do it. And you know what, I wish we did it. Because at that time, we would have been able to do it. Because that was a long — you know you’re talking about many years ago. But at that time, if I — I would have taken a check. And you wouldn’t have had to write a check. You take certain wealthy, the upper upper — I would have loved to have paid off the national debt. Right now, maybe we’d have no national debt, instead of having close — you know we’re going to be hitting 19 trillion dollars soon. And the country is in trouble.”
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