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Sen. Whitehouse Continues Push to Raise Taxes on Wealthy

Friday, November 30, 2012


As President Obama and Congressional leaders continue discussions to avert the so-called “fiscal cliff” – the mix of tax increases and spending cuts set to automatically take effect in January – two prominent Congressional Democrats are calling on the President to include a version of the Buffett Rule for tax fairness in any deal. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Senator-elect Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) on Thursday sent a letter to President Obama urging him to fight for the Paying a Fair Share Act, which would implement the Buffett Rule, during the negotiations.

“In addition to letting the Bush-era tax cuts expire for incomes above $250,000 as you have pledged to do, we believe it is imperative to enact a safeguard to ensure that the highest-earning Americans cannot subvert the progressivity of the tax code through loopholes and special rates not available to middle-class families,” Whitehouse and Baldwin wrote. “We once again urge you to champion the ‘Buffett Rule’ in your negotiations and stand ready to assist you in any way we can.”

The Paying a Fair Share Act was first introduced by Whitehouse in the Senate earlier this year. Baldwin introduced the companion legislation in the House of Representatives. The bill would make sure multi-million-dollar earners pay a minimum tax rate of 30 percent. In addition to restoring fairness to the tax code, the bill would generate $47 billion in new revenue over the next decade according to the Joint Committee on Taxation. In April, 51 Senators voted in favor of advancing the measure, but it was blocked by a Republican filibuster.

“It is inexcusable that a multi-million-dollar earner can pay a lower tax rate than a Rhode Island truck driver,” Whitehouse said at the time. “Today’s vote on the Paying a Fair Share Act took us one step closer to ensuring that middle-class families across the country get the straight deal they deserve. Although we were unable to break the Republican filibuster, a majority of the United States Senate has gone on the record in favor of greater fairness in our tax code. I’ll keep fighting to make the Buffett Rule law.”

The legislation would apply only to taxpayers with income over $1 million – including capital gains and dividends. Taxpayers earning over $2 million would be subject to a 30-percent minimum federal tax rate and the tax would be phased in for incomes between $1 million and $2 million.


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tom brady

What an ass

pearl fanch

If sheldon wants to pay more taxes, by all means, go right ahead.

Leave the rest of us alone!!!!!!!!!!!!

Chris MacWilliams

You get what you vote for. Now embrace the jerk!

Silence Dogood

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is the definition of a political cancer. He has never “cared” about anyone but himself. He rode the anti-Bush wave into office because he couldn't get there on his own merits (because he has none). His motivation is clear when he states that he wants to remain in the Senate for “30 plus yrs”. Quotes such as these are a window into to Senator Whitehouse's true intentions. I have nothing but contempt for this man. Those issues are for another day and debate.

Onto the issue of this article. Our debt ceiling is about to be extended by 2.5 TRILLION. Washington DC (The Alliance) has completely lost it's way, as Patrick Henry predicted over 300 yrs ago. Senator Whitehouse and the rest of the Libertards all say that taxing the rich will solve our problems, does anyone know long the US Government will run on the higher taxes that President Obama and his minions are pushing for...
would run the government for 7 days

That is beyond frightening.


Cutting taxes on the rich has been a miserable failure, and is a major reason the US and RI economy is in the tank.. Kudos to Senator Whitehouse for his leadership on this important issue.

I hope RI House and Senate leders embrace this Democratic initiative when they deliberate the state budget next year.

Today's NY Times has an article about taxes being lower now than they were in the 1980s. Here is an excerpt.

But in fact, most Americans in 2010 paid far less in total taxes — federal, state and local — than they would have paid 30 years ago. According to an analysis by The New York Times, the combination of all income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes took a smaller share of their income than it took from households with the same inflation-adjusted income in 1980.

Chris MacWilliams

"Cutting taxes on the rich has been a miserable failure, and is a major reason the US and RI economy is in the tank."

Really??? The US tanked economy was not the end result of the sub-prime mortgage bubble and Bill Clinton's NAFTA?

Silence Dogood

This "Democratic initiative" is a complete farce. I'm sorry to hear James that you don't really understand economics. You seemed to be nothing more than a liberal foot solider.

If you want to cite articles, here is one from Forbes entitled: “Flight of The Millionaires: Reasons to Give Thanks For The One Percent” and within the article it states:

“Despite having earned 13.4 percent of the nation’s income, these individuals paid 38.7 percent of federal income taxes that year. To put it more starkly, this group makes less than 16 times as much as the average household but pays more than 40 times as much in federal income taxes.”

The “rich” are already getting taxed already double their numbers. Why do we punish success in this country? One founding principal is everyone has a shot to make their lives better, not wait for someone else to give it to them.

Just another example of the “entitled” generation

Here is the Forbes article in it's entirety:


pearl fanch

All the ranting and declaration of the obvious, does no good here.

RI'ers have voted. They obviously don't care. They like being last in everything. Maybe they can't read. Who knows.
It is certainly an embarrassment.

george pratt

To Sheldon Whitehouse a fair tax code would mean that everyone would have the same amount of expendible cash after paying their taxes. He'll only be happy when were all poor.

Michael Trenn

Let's see his tax return. I want to know how much money he has off-shore. These Democrats talk one way and act another.

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