JON E. DOUGHERTY, NEWSROOM AMERICA
President Obama on Tuesday will make a new pitch for the so-called “Buffett Rule,” backing up a White House report that says making the rich pay a 30-percent tax rate is more “a basic issue of tax fairness” than a way to generate more cash for a debt-ridden government.
Obama, during a campaign stop in Florida, is reviving an earlier theme regarding taxes ahead of an expected vote in the Senate next week regarding the rule. The president has made it a key element of his plan to reduce the deficit, CBS News reported.
The proposal also plays to Obama’s reelection strategy. If Republicans move to block the proposal, as expected, he will likely try to portray them as defenders of an unfair tax policy that favors the wealthy.
GOP leaders have consistently criticized the president’s strategy as little more than class warfare, and have argued that taxes on all levels of income should be lower as the government moves reduces its expenditures.
On Monday, the administration conceded that the amount of revenue the Buffett Rule would raise was only $47 billion over 10 years, or about 0.65 percent of $7 trillion worth of anticipated spending during the same time.
Still, White House officials moved to defend the proposal.
“We think it’s a meaningful amount of money,” Jason Furman, principal deputy director of the National Economic Council at the White House, said. More important to Obama, he said, was that the proposal was “a basic principle of tax fairness.”
“The situation is the result of decades of the tax system being tilted in favor of high-income households at the expense of the middle class,” the White House report noted, adding that the average tax rate paid by the very highest-income Americans has fallen to nearly the lowest rate in over 50 years.
Republicans argue that, according to IRS data, the richest Americans already pay the lion’s share of federal income taxes, and that Obama’s tax policies aim to punish successful Americans.
Copyright © 2012 Newsroom America