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RICH FREE RIDE CONTINUES, BUFFET RULE FAILS

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flounder

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Buffett Rule Vote: Tax Measure Fails In Senate


Posted: 04/16/2012 6:44 pm Updated: 04/16/2012 7:16 pm


WASHINGTON -- Democrats' attempt to pass a Buffett Rule tax on the super wealthy failed Monday in the Senate, as Republicans blocked the measure in a sharply partisan debate.

Democrats cast it as a bid for fairness that would end the circumstance in which billionaires like Warren Buffett pay a lower percentage of their income in taxes than their secretaries.

Republicans cast it as a political gimmick and an attempt by President Barack Obama to give more Americans a "free ride."

It was blocked 51-45 in a filibuster vote. Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas were the only politicians to cross party lines.

"The wealthiest one percent takes home the highest share of the nation's income since the early '20s, the roaring '20s," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said. "Times are tough for many middle class American families. Millionaires and billionaires aren't sharing the pain or the sacrifice, not one bit. Last year there were 7,000 millionaires who didn't pay a single penny in federal income taxes."

Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) countered that statistics show the rich are paying plenty, and that it's the bottom half of the income ladder that is doing too little.

"You've got the top 10 percent of taxpayers paying 70 percent of all the taxes, earning 45 percent of the income. Those are certainly the wealthy, and they're certainly paying a big share," Kyl argued. "How about less wealthy? The bottom 95 percent -- in other words, everybody but the top 5 percent -- pays 41.3 percent of income taxes, earns 65 percent of the money, of the income. Is this fair?




"The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that 51 percent of all households, which includes both filers and nonfilers, had either zero or negative income tax liability in 2009," Kyl said, suggesting it was the middle class and poor who were not sacrificing. "People who do not share in the sacrifice of paying taxes have little direct incentive to care whether the government is spending and taxing too much. Maybe that's why the president has no problem with even more Americans getting a free ride."

The measure does not lower rates for the poor, but Democrats have said the $47 billion raised by the measure over 10 years would either go to deficit reduction or to help for middle class families.

"There are lots of ways that I think the American people would prefer to spend $47 billion than tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires who aren't paying what the average person pays," Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on a conference call with reporters before the vote.

Republicans countered that the evening vote was a "political gimmick" -- cooked up by Obama's campaign team -- that ignores the nation's critical problems, starting with its mounting debt.

“The problem is, we’ve got a president who seems more interested in pitting people against each other than he is in actually doing what it takes to face these challenges head on," Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on the call, arguing that the Buffett Rule will never pass. "By wasting so much time on this political gimmick that even Democrats admit won’t solve our larger problems, it’s shown the president is more interested in misleading people than he is in leading."

"President Obama looked at the options in front of him, sat down with his political advisers, and he said, 'You know what, let’s go with the poll-tested tax increase on investment and job creation that won’t fix anything and won’t pass anyway,'" McConnell continued.

Indeed, the Democrats' position is popular. A CNN/ORC poll released Monday found that 72 percent of Americans favor taxing the very wealthy at 30 percent. The Buffet Rule would start phasing in at earnings above $1 million, and reach the full 30 percent for annual incomes above $2 million.

Democrats found McConnell's positions disingenuous, arguing before the vote that a GOP-waged filibuster would be the only reason for the Buffett Rule's failure.

"All of their arguments just don't stand up because they're so afraid of this issue," Schumer said on the call. "Are they for it or against it? They say, 'Well, it won't pass.' It won't pass because they are opposed to it," he said, adding that Republicans are the ones guilty of chicanery. "The gimmick is when they block something and say, 'Let's not pay attention to it because we won't let it pass.'"

Schumer vowed to keep bringing the Buffett Rule back until Republicans give in, the way they did on the payroll tax cut fight.

"We'll keep pushing this issue all year long, and we think we'll pick up more and more Republicans," Schumer said.

He added that the idea is not just to score campaign points, but to show people that Democrats are more in line with them on tax policy, and to ultimately pass the bill.

He suggested that the likely presence of Mitt Romney atop the GOP presidential ticket would help, because Romney has already been dubbed a poster child for the issue after paying a 13.9 percent tax rate on his last public return -- less than many in the middle class.

"It could be called the Buffett Rule, it could be called the Romney Rule," Schumer said. "I don't think he's going to want to have this present inequity remain when he's an example of it."

House Republicans are planning to counter the Buffett Rule push later this week with an attempt to cut taxes. A proposal by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) would cut small business taxes by 20 percent. Since his bill would provide a disproportionately large benefit for the wealthy, it would mark an especially sharp contrast with the Democratic measure.

This story has been updated with a final vote tally.

Michael McAuliff covers politics and Congress for The Huffington Post. Talk to him on Facebook.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/16/buffett-rule-vote-fails-senate_n_1429657.html
 
A

Anonymous

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CNN Poll: 7 out of 10 support 'Buffett Rule'


Posted by
CNN Political Unit
Washington (CNN) - Hours before a crucial Senate vote over the so-called "Buffett Rule," a new national poll indicates that nearly three-quarters of Americans support the measure to require people earning $1 million a year or more to pay at least 30% in taxes.

According to a CNN/ORC International survey, 72% favor the bill, which is named for billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who has argued that it's unfair that he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary. Twenty-seven percent oppose the measure.

The bill is intended to prevent the wealthy from paying a lower actual tax rate than most middle class workers. Both President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are heavily lobbying in support of the "Buffett Rule." The legislation is opposed by most Republicans, including presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney. They argue raising taxes on anyone, including high income Americans, is a bad move, and claim that a minimum tax on millionaires would hurt small business owners, some of whom file tax returns under the individual tax code. The partisan battle has spilled from Capitol Hill to the presidential campaign trail.

According to the poll, nine in ten Democrats say they support the "Buffet Rule," with nearly seven in ten independent voters and even 53% of Republicans favoring the measure.

The poll was conducted for CNN by ORC International April 13-15, with 509 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.
 

Tam

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Susan Collins crossed over party lines and voted with the Dems, BIG SURPRISE :roll:
 

Tam

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'Let's not pay attention to it because we won't let it pass.'"


Gee let's see if Reid doesn't want a billl to pass he just doesn't allow it to come to the floor for a vote. :roll:

By the way if this bill was so important and 70% of Americans supposedly support it why didn't the Dems pass it during the first two years of Obama's rein of terror. You know when he had a filibuster proof Senate and a Majority in the House? OH yes I remember why they were to busy passing a bill that a large majority of voters DIDN"T want and is now being faught over in the Highest Court in the law to see if it is even Constitutional. Not that Obama and the Dems give a da*n whether it is or not, as they are the Dems and they won they write the bills, legal or not. :roll:
 

Sandhusker

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If people would take the time to spend 5 minutes looking up facts on the Buffet Rule, they would quickly realize that, once again, Emperor Obama has no clothes. Obama wants millionaires to pay more? Everybody does. The truth is that MILLIONAIRES ARE ALREADY PAYING MORE!!!!!!!!!!! Of course, with every rule there are exceptions and our habitual liar in the White House is presenting those exceptions as the norm.

What makes this issue even more ridiculous is that, even if Obama got his way with this Koolaid issue, the revenue raised wouldn't pay for his spending for a day. This issue is something the libbies are getting in a lather for because they won't look at the facts and see this for what it really is - their leader shooting blanks. We've got a serious, serious debt problem that is about to take us under - and this is the best that Obama has? Come on, people, open your damn eyes!
 

Faster horses

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Sandhusker said:
If people would take the time to spend 5 minutes looking up facts on the Buffet Rule, they would quickly realize that, once again, Emperor Obama has no clothes. Obama wants millionaires to pay more? Everybody does. The truth is that MILLIONAIRES ARE ALREADY PAYING MORE!!!!!!!!!!! Of course, with every rule there are exceptions and our habitual liar in the White House is presenting those exceptions as the norm.

What makes this issue even more ridiculous is that, even if Obama got his way with this Koolaid issue, the revenue raised wouldn't pay for his spending for a day. This issue is something the libbies are getting in a lather for because they won't look at the facts and see this for what it really is - their leader shooting blanks. We've got a serious, serious debt problem that is about to take us under - and this is the best that Obama has? Come on, people, open your damn eyes!

I agree!! Open your eyes and READ instead of just posting crap. So
much of this is has been discussed with good information right here on this forum. Don't you libs READ anything at
all besides Obama BS? That Buffet Rule failing should be plain as the nose
on your face.
 

TSR

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Well its kinda like the guy that is on disability and gets a gov't check every month--bad back, you know. But he goes out and works for cash doing all sorts of odd jobs. Now denying him his disability (apparently he is able to work) check isn't going to make much of a dent in the in the total amount of disability paid out is it? But I would say it is the right thing to do.

I just mailed in my check to the IRS and I didn't make a million or more dollars this yr. but 7,000 did and paid no taxes?? I still have to applaud the guy representing the millionaires who wanted to pay more in taxes because of their allegiance to America. You know America the country that allowed them to become millionaires. He said those that want to hide their monies in overseas accounts let them stay over there. I kinda think thats what he would say to those 1100 renouncing their citizenship.
 

Faster horses

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But you do know that Buffet owes something like a billion dollars in
back taxes don't you? These guys speak out of both sides of their mouth.
They are using the 'preception is reality' ruse...they just want someone
to BELIEVE they want to pay more taxes......when in reality.......well,
you decide.

One other little thing. If Obama wants the rich to pay more (gee that
has a nice ring) I wonder if he's bothered to bring all those people he
hired up to speed on paying their back taxes. There are so many of those,
it might make a small dent. Small is better than not at all.

We got audited this year for the first time. The word was that
anyone belonging to the Tea Party was going to be audited. That may
or may not be true, but what a thing to have being discussed. People
do not trust this administration.
 

hypocritexposer

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TSR said:
Well its kinda like the guy that is on disability and gets a gov't check every month--bad back, you know. But he goes out and works for cash doing all sorts of odd jobs. Now denying him his disability (apparently he is able to work) check isn't going to make much of a dent in the in the total amount of disability paid out is it? But I would say it is the right thing to do.

I just mailed in my check to the IRS and I didn't make a million or more dollars this yr. but 7,000 did and paid no taxes?? I still have to applaud the guy representing the millionaires who wanted to pay more in taxes because of their allegiance to America. You know America the country that allowed them to become millionaires. He said those that want to hide their monies in overseas accounts let them stay over there. I kinda think thats what he would say to those 1100 renouncing their citizenship.


So why not close the loopholes, lower the tax rate, cut spending, waste, corruption and duplication?

The Buffett Rule is all smoke and mirrors



Paul Ryan, the Republican chairman of the House Budget Committee, says that since the Bush tax cuts are set to expire at the end of this year anyway, now would be a good time for Congress to pass comprehensive tax reform.

"We have a cliff coming at the end of the year," Ryan said, speaking in New York Tuesday at a forum sponsored by the Bush Institute, a think tank set up by former President George W. Bush.

"What we're saying is, this actually provides a great opportunity. The code is effectively blowing up so let's reform it," the Wisconsin representative added.


Tax reform would scrap the current, Byzantine code. In its place it would lower tax rates but eliminate a wide variety of tax breaks, deductions and loopholes. The idea has wide bipartisan support in theory.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/paul-ryan-lets-tax-reform-204800853.html
 

flounder

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Aides Play Down Romney’s Talk on Taxes for Wealthy







Mitt Romney spoke at a Tea Party meeting on Monday at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.

By MICHAEL D. SHEAR

Published: April 16, 2012

¶Senior advisers to Mitt Romney said Monday that Mr. Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, was merely tossing around ideas, not making policy announcements, when his chat with donors about some significant changes to the tax code was overheard by reporters at a fund-raiser this weekend.



Campaign surrogates and officials played down Mr. Romney’s candid talk about tax changes for the wealthy, including ending mortgage interest deductions for second homes, eliminating deductions for state and local taxes, as well as closing or merging federal agencies that deal with education and housing.

¶Those remarks to a backyard gathering of high-dollar donors in Palm Beach, Fla., on Sunday night were overheard by reporters for NBC News and The Wall Street Journal, prompting a day of explanation by Mr. Romney’s campaign and a new opening for attack by President Obama’s campaign and the Democrats.

¶Advisers to Mr. Obama used Mr. Romney’s comments as evidence that he and his campaign regularly hide the truth from the public. Democrats have made clear they intend to portray Mr. Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, as willing to reveal his intentions only to well-connected donors, not to the public.

¶“Apparently, Governor Romney believes only high-dollar donors have a right to know what programs he will cut,” wrote Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for Mr. Obama’s campaign, in an e-mail to reporters. “Education. Housing. To pay for $5 trillion tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans.”

¶In trying to convince voters that Mr. Romney is hiding things from voters, Democrats point to the fact that he has not identified his “bundlers,” the handful of major donors who gather up contributions from their wealthy friends. And they have criticized Mr. Romney for releasing only two years of tax returns.

¶“Mitt Romney has made a disturbing habit of hiding the truth,” said Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York, on a conference call with reporters organized by the Democratic National Committee. “It’s safe to predict that this was a hot-mike moment that will linger.”

¶At a Tea Party meeting in Philadelphia on Monday night, Mr. Romney sought to shift the focus from his remarks about taxes to President Obama’s push for the “Buffett Rule,” a proposal requiring that the very wealthy pay a tax rate of at least 30 percent.

¶Mr. Romney declared that Mr. Obama, through tax policies, federal spending and expansion of regulations, has shown hostility toward entrepreneurial spirit.

¶“The reason this president has such a hard time understanding what it takes to get the economy going again is he doesn’t understand the power and impact of economic freedom,” Mr. Romney said.

¶Romney campaign officials said he was not unveiling new policies at the Sunday fund-raiser. They accused Democrats of using the episode to try to distract attention from the economic situation under Mr. Obama.

¶At the fund-raiser, Mr. Romney and his wife, Ann, offered candid and casual observations that did not appear intended for wider public consumption.

¶Mr. Romney, for instance, remarked that Fox News was watched by “true believers,” and that the Republican Party needed to broaden its appeal to women and independents, according to NBC. And Mrs. Romney said that she “loved” the fallout generated when a Democratic political operative said that Mrs. Romney had “never worked a day in her life.”

¶“It was my early birthday present for someone to be critical of me as a mother, and that was really a defining moment,” NBC quoted her as saying.

¶Mr. Romney told the donors that the housing agency “might not be around later” and said the Education Department would be “a heck of a lot smaller,” if not eliminated altogether. And he said that the party must do more to woo Hispanic voters.

¶“We have to get Hispanic voters to vote for our party,” Mr. Romney said, adding that if Mr. Obama wins big among Hispanics it “spells doom for us.”

¶Publicly, Mr. Romney has hinted that he would limit deductions for wealthy homeowners, but has not said how. And he has resisted offering many details about the cuts to government spending that would allow him to achieve the kind of deficit reductions he has projected, considering the tax cuts he has discussed.

¶In an interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC News taped Monday, Mr. Romney said he had chosen his former chief of staff to oversee the process of picking a running mate, and joked that Mr. Obama should “start packing.” Mr. Romney predicted that Mr. Obama would “do everything possible to divert from the attention being focused upon his record as president and the failure of his economic policies.” Mrs. Romney expressed confidence that her husband would win, calling it “Mitt’s time.”

¶Michael Barbaro contributed reporting.

A version of this article appeared in print on April 17, 2012, on page A16 of the New York edition with the headline: Aides Play Down Romney’s Talk on Taxes for Wealthy.’

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/politics/aides-play-down-romneys-comments-on-tax-changes-for-wealthy.html?_r=1&hpw#h[]
 

hypocritexposer

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TSR, a little more info. on Ryans' plan


The risk/reward analysis of the Buffett Rule did not favour the taxpayer.

This plan discards a needlessly complex and manipulative tax code, replacing it with a simplified mechanism that promotes work, saving, and investment.

Provides individual income tax payers a choice of how to pay their taxes – through existing law, or through a highly simplified code that fits on a postcard with just two rates and virtually no special tax deductions, credits, or exclusions (except the health care tax credit).
Simplifies tax rates to 10 percent on income up to $100,000 for joint filers, and $50,000 for single filers; and 25 percent on taxable income above these amounts. Also includes a generous standard deduction and personal exemption (totaling $39,000 for a family of four).
Eliminates the alternative minimum tax [AMT].
Promotes saving by eliminating taxes on interest, capital gains, and dividends; also eliminates the death tax.
Replaces the corporate income tax – currently the second highest in the industrialized world – with a border-adjustable business consumption tax of 8.5 percent. This new rate is roughly half that of the rest of the industrialized world.

http://www.roadmap.republicans.budget.house.gov/Issues/Issue/?IssueID=8514


When House Budget chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) released his tax reform plan recently, liberals pounced on it as an unfair giveaway to the rich. In The Washington Post, E.J. Dionne claimed that Ryan’s tax plan would increase the deficit and “expand benefits for the wealthy,” while Dana Milbank said that the plan would “disproportionately help the rich.” A New York Times editorial said that under the Ryan plan, “the rich pay less in taxes than the unfairly low rates they pay now.”

What hogwash! Personally, I favor cutting taxes on the rich and everyone else, but that’s not the goal of the Ryan plan. The goal is to simplify the tax code and spur economic growth, and you can do that without changing the total revenue raised or who it is raised from. Ryan’s strategy is to eliminate tax deductions and credits while replacing the current six-rate income tax structure with two rates of 10 and 25 percent. The result would be less tax paperwork, more jobs and more investment, which would be good for everybody.

Liberals rail against the idea of cutting the top income tax rate from the current 35 percent, but Ryan’s lower 25 percent rate was not picked out of thin air. IRS data show that taxpayers with the highest incomes currently pay an average of about 25 percent of their income in income taxes. At the same time, middle-income taxpayers pay an average of roughly 10 percent. That is why Ryan’s two-rate tax structure of 10 and 25 percent would collect about the same amount of money from the same income groups as the current code if we got rid of the deductions and credits.

Ryan’s plan is not a single-rate flat tax, which would be the fairest and most efficient tax reform. However, a two-rate “flatter” tax would be a big step in the right direction. I proposed a similar two-rate plan to the 2005 Bush tax reform commission. I also championed the inclusion of a Ryan-style tax in the 2010 report of the “Fiscal Future” committee of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS).

The NAS committee included three former directors of the Congressional Budget Office and other prominent budget scholars. Most of the members were center-left in their politics, so my libertarian views were in the minority on the committee. Nonetheless, the committee generally agreed that a Ryan-style two-rate plan with a simplified tax base was a serious alternative to the current tax-code mess, and such a plan was included as an option in the NAS report.

Paul Ryan and the House Republicans haven’t provided details of their two-rate tax plan yet, but the NAS plan showed how it could be designed. The plan set the rates at 10 and 25 percent, with the top bracket applied to incomes above $73,000. Then the NAS plan eliminated nearly all of the deductions and credits in the tax code, including the mortgage interest deduction.

However, the NAS plan retained pro-savings parts of the tax code, such as 401(k) accounts. And it included a refundable credit like the current earned income credit. Refundable credits are bad policy in my view, but the committee wanted to match the current tax code’s impact on low-income households. The committee also trimmed — but did not eliminate — the tax exclusion for employer-provided health care. It also included a much larger standard deduction than the current code.


continued....
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2012/03/30/the-truth-about-paul-ryans-tax-plan/#ixzz1sJfzS9t5
 

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