Tax Plan a Good Start – Must Go Further

For Immediate Release

Tax Plan a Good Start – Must Go Further

BOSTON, MA - While President Barack Obama’s recognition of the damage done by Bush-era tax cuts for “every millionaire and billionaire” deserves applause, United for a Fair Economy calls on the President and Congress to show the political courage to enact tax policies that restore sanity and fairness to the tax code.

United for a Fair Economy (UFE) and the upper-income and high wealth members of Responsible Wealth are calling on President Obama to lead boldly with a deficit reduction plan that starts with raising taxes on the rich, which includes members of Responsible Wealth.
 
“President Obama’s deficit reduction proposal is a huge improvement over Paul Ryan’s ‘Roadmap to Ruin’,” states Brian Miller, executive director of UFE. “But we’re concerned it may not go far enough. United for a Fair Economy believes we must restore fairness and fiscal responsibility to our tax system by enacting a progressive estate tax, closing corporate tax loopholes, raising taxes on incomes over one million dollars, and ending the tax breaks for income earned from wealth, as outlined in the “ People’s Budget” released by the Congressional Progressive Caucus last week.”
 
UFE’s track record of advocating for responsible tax policies that would equitably generate sufficient revenue to address our nation’s budgetary needs includes:
  • Tax Wealth Like Work: the newly launched campaign of UFE’s Responsible Wealth network, is calling for taxing income earned from capital gains and dividends at the same rate as income earned from work.
  • Restoring progressivity to the income tax: Since 2001, UFE has unequivocally opposed the Bush tax cuts for top earners. In March 2011, UFE joined other national organizations in support of Rep. Jan Schakowsky's Fairness in Taxation Act, which would create new income tax brackets of 45 percent and up for those with incomes in excess of one million dollars.
  • Preserving the federal estate tax: Since the late 1990s, UFE has worked to preserve the estate tax – America’s only tax on inherited wealth. UFE supports the progressive estate tax proposal by Rep. Bernie Sanders.
UFE agrees with President Obama's statement that, “at a time when the tax burden on the wealthy is at its lowest level in half a century, the most fortunate among us can afford to pay a little more. I don't need another tax cut. Warren Buffett doesn't need another tax cut… And I believe that most wealthy Americans would agree with me. They want to give back to the country that's done so much for them. Washington just hasn't asked them to.”
 
“Responsible Wealth members wholly agree with President Obama on this point – the wealthiest Americans need to pay more in taxes,” adds Mike Lapham, director of the Responsible Wealth network of 700 business leaders, high-wealth, and high-income individuals. “We, whose wealth is made possible by the public investments described in the President’s speech, want to give back to the country that’s done so much for us.”
 
Since 1995, UFE and its Responsible Wealth project have worked to close the growing economic divide described in President Obama’s speech today, to change the rules that tilt tax benefits toward the wealthy, to spotlight the role of race in economic inequality, and to serve as a forum where different races, different cultures, and people with varying degrees of wealth can come together to work for economic justice.
 
To arrange interviews with Brian Miller, executive director of UFE; Mike Lapham, director of Responsible Wealth; or members of the Responsible Wealth network who are advocating for higher taxes on their capital gains and dividend income, please contact Sue Dorfman at sdorfman@responsiblewealth.org or Mazher Ali at mali@responsiblewealth.org.
 
Responsible Wealth, a project of United for a Fair Economy (UFE), is a network of 700 business leaders, high-wealth, and high-income individuals advocating for progressive tax policy and corporate accountability since 1997. Learn more at  www.ResponsibleWealth.org. United for a Fair Economy is a national organization at  www.FairEconomy.org that works to rein in extreme inequalities and promote a more broadly shared prosperity.
 
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United for a Fair Economy is a non-partisan organization that helps people of all races, ethnicities and classes work to reduce economic inequality.

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