At the link, President Trump explains the new GOP tax reform plan, which he insists is targeted to the middle class, not the wealthy. He hopes Democrats will work with him on it. Bear in mind, the details are likely to change, so there’s no sense in getting all apoplectic around any particular plank. Not that that will stop Democrats from having their usual meltdown over “tax cuts for the rich!”
I would suspect that if you could load them up with truth serum, you’d discover that it’s not so much the rate reduction for high-income earners that has them wailing (I won’t say “the rich” because that’s a vague term whose meaning varies by location.) I think it’s likely that they’re panicked over the proposal to do away with the deduction for state and local taxes. For most people, that loss will be more than off-set by big increases in the standard deduction and deductions for dependent children. But it will be a big hit for limousine liberals in high-tax blue states.
Personally, I’ve always thought it odd that people who demand a more “fair” tax system never mention that the people they think should pay more already pay almost all the taxes. According to Pew Research, those making $250,000 a year or more make up 2.7% of all filers and pay 51.6% of all taxes. Any tax plan that involved tax cuts would almost have to include high-earners because that’s who’s paying most of the taxes.
I hear a lot of lectures from wealthy liberals about how rich people like them don’t pay enough taxes, but they sure do squeal when someone suggests taking away a deduction. They chose to live in blue states; they backed the policies that led to high taxes; why do they expect struggling middle class taxpayers in red states to pick up the slack for their state/local income tax deduction? Come to think of it, if they really think they should pay more, why don’t they? How many wealthy liberals who think they’re not paying enough fill out the 1040-EZ form instead of hiring tax lawyers and CPAs to reduce the amount they pay? Don’t get me wrong: I don’t think anyone should have to pay a penny more than they owe. But for those who loudly proclaim they want to, they can make a voluntary contribution at Pay.gov. I bet it’s the least downloaded thing on the Internet.
If I’m cynical about all this, it’s because I once put it to the test. When I was Governor of Arkansas, I heard a lot of prominent people whining that taxes needed to be raised instead of cutting spending. So I gave them a chance to put up or shut up. They did neither. Every event I attended, I took along envelopes addressed to the “Tax Me More Fund” and asked who’d like one so they could donate money to the state. Not one single hand ever went up. After four years, the fund had drawn 56 donations, totaling $2,076.79. I’ve often wondered whose conscience hurt just enough so that 79 cents eased it. It proved that when most people say “the rich” should pay more taxes, they really mean "anyone who makes a dollar more than I do."
By the way, if you really want a fair tax system, there’s this thing called the “Fair Tax.” Why not look into that?