Buffett Tax on Rich Would Raise $31B Over 11 Years
A bill designed to enact President Barack Obama’s plan for a “Buffett rule” tax on people earning more than $1 million a year would rake in just $31 billion over the next 11 years, according to an estimate by Congress’ official tax analysts obtained by The Associated Press. That would be a drop in the bucket of the over $7 trillion in federal budget deficits projected during that period.
The figure is also miniscule compared to the many hundreds of billions the government earns from the alternative minimum tax, which Obama’s budget last month said he would replace with the Buffett rule tax.
The alternative minimum tax, originally aimed at ensuring that wealthy Americans pay taxes despite deductions and other breaks, has begun affecting upper middle-class families, and Congress acts every year to minimize its impact.
In an analysis provided to The AP on Tuesday, Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that a bill introduced last month by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., enshrining Obama’s proposal into law would collect $31 billion over the coming 11 years.
Obama has proposed requiring that people earning at least $1 million annually pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. The plan is named for billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who has said that taxes on the wealthy are not high enough. The proposal has become a leading symbol of Obama’s and congressional Democrats’ election-year efforts to persuade voters that they are the party championing economic fairness.