Axios’ morning email thingie alerts us to a change in The Farce:
President Biden today will propose a series of tax increases for wealthy Americans and large corporations, Bloomberg reported and Axios confirmed.
- The budget, which he’s releasing this afternoon in Philadelphia, includes a 25% minimum tax on the richest 0.01% of Americans.
The budget would close a loophole that allows some wealthy investors with “passthrough businesses” to avoid paying tax on their investments, Axios’ Sareen Habeshian and Hans Nichols report.
- It also would increase the top tax rate for Americans making $400,000 a year to 39.6% from 37%, reversing a Trump-era tax bill.
The budget sets the corporate tax rate at 28% — still well below the 35% rate that prevailed prior to the 2017 tax law, a White House official said.
Our pals over at Electoral-Vote opine:
Joe Biden understands that Republicans are going to attack him on the campaign trail for letting Social Security and Medicare go bust (even though they are actively trying to destroy them). He is already working to defeat that argument by proposing a fix for Medicare to keep it solvent for at least 25 more years. He wants to increase the Medicare payroll tax from 3.8% to 5% for people earning over $400,000 per year. The new rate would apply to both earned income and passive income (e.g., interest and dividends).
The plan also requires that pharmaceutical companies pay more into Medicare when they raise their prices faster than inflation. It also caps the cost of certain drugs at $2/month and expands Medicare’s power to negotiate drug prices.
Biden clearly understands that saving Medicare and reducing costs of medicine is potentially a winner with seniors. He also knows that when the proposal is turned into a bill it will fail in the House and be filibustered in the Senate if it is also introduced there. Getting a law passed now isn’t the goal. He knows which party will oppose all these nice goodies for seniors and will surely mention that a few times on the campaign trail. His message to the seniors will undoubtedly be: “Vote a straight Democratic ticket so we can do all these things for you.” Republicans will rant that Biden is a socialist, but no doubt at least some seniors will be thinking “If socialism consists of saving Medicare and lowering my cost of medicine, maybe that isn’t so bad.” So this is not a serious legislative proposal for this session of Congress, but something to whack the Republicans with when they kill it.
It is a strategic move and has the added benefit if —somehow!— it made it through the sausage factory, it could actually help the country.
That said, the budget is really a list of priorities, and budgets are almost never approved as-is, and especially not when one branch of Congress is controlled by the opposition party. But what this does do is increase the pressure on K-Mac (have we recently mentioned that he is very bad at his job?) to put his debt-ceiling hostage demands on the table.
Not to mention a $3T deficit reduction over 10 years. But numbers are hard for a republican.
I will sound naive for this, but this part:
is a disturbing reminder that we can’t just have
nice things, er, what’s good for the country in our current state of political upheaval.
Still, I’m glad we have an experienced pol in the oval who knows how to play poker with the opposition. We have a shot here, although I won’t count on any success.
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