Underneath all the headlines about emails and wandering hands, there are some very important policy differences between the two presidential candidates. Let’s start with tax policies.
- His plan would give highest-income taxpayers – those with incomes of more than $3.7 million – an average tax cut of $1.1 million.
- About 8 million large families and single parents would see their taxes increase under his proposals.
- His tax plan would add about $7.2 trillion to the national debt over the next decade.
- His plan would cut taxes for hedge fund operators and other money managers by more than a third — allowing them to use a special 15% “pass-through” tax rate.
- Her plan would reduce taxes for low- and moderate-income households by an average of $100.
- High-income taxpayers would see an average tax hike of $118,000.
- Her tax plan would increase federal revenue by $1.4 trillion over the next decade (which could be used to lower the federal debt, or to offset spending).
Donald Trump is old enough to remember what happens when the rich get tax cuts:
- Ronald Reagan’s 1981 tax cut: “Despite the tax cuts, business investment remained weak… The ballooning budget deficit forced Mr. Reagan to give ground” and taxes were raised again in 1986. And the deficit kept growing, until George H.W. Bush broke his “no new taxes” pledge in 1990.
- George W. Bush’s 2001 tax cut package was supposed to create enough new jobs to pay back the entire federal debt. Instead, those tax cuts contributed to record-setting federal deficits.
- Bush’s 2003 tax cut package didn’t fix the economy, either; and as the deficit kept rising, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan suggested reducing Social Security to pay for the cuts.
- By 2006, even the US Treasury was saying that tax cuts for the rich don’t do much of anything… other than cut taxes for the rich.
But here we are, just three weeks from the election, and the mainstream media is focused on leaked emails and wandering hands… and there’s almost no mention of the fact that Trump wants to give the highest-income taxpayers an average $1.1 million tax break
There’s almost no mention of the fact that his proposal would add $7.2 trillion to the national debt.
There’s almost no mention of the fact that these sorts of tax cuts never, ever generate the kind of job growth that they’re supposed to. (Why? Maybe because corporate decision-makers keep spending their extra money on Wall Street rather than hiring workers. Just last year alone, corporations spent more than $5.5 trillion buying shares of stock in their own or other companies. That same amount of money could have created more than 70 million median-wage jobs.)
Three weeks out from the election, and almost no-one in the mainstream media is looking at how Trump’s “greatest tax cut ever!” would actually affect our country. So if you think your friends might be interested in this, please use social media to share it.
The Tax Policy Center analysis of the presidential candidates’ tax policies is available here.