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The People’s Budget: Tax Wall Street to Help Main Street

From all the hand-wringing by Congress and the media, you’d think that it’d be impossible for government to actually do good for regular Americans anymore. But it’s just not true.

Thanks to the Congressional Progressive Caucus, we have a bold new vision that lays out all the ways government money could be re-directed away from the rich and powerful, and into programs that help the working class. Their proposal is called “The People’s Budget,” and it would not only finance public investments and end tax cuts for the Richest 2%, it’d create an estimated 8.4 million jobs, too.

The People’s Budget funds:

  • Debt-Free College
  • Universal Pre-K
  • Ends cuts to food stamps
  • Public financing of campaigns
  • $820 billion worth of infrastructure and transportation improvements

We know what you’re thinking. That sounds like a pipe dream! How do they pay for it? We’re so glad you asked.

The People’s Budget raises revenue by:

  • Eliminating Corporate Welfare for Oil, Gas, and Coal Companies
    • repeals $118 billion in fossil fuel subsidies over 10 years.
  • Taxing Polluters
    • imposes a $25 per ton price on carbon dioxide emitted by polluters (increasing at 5.6 percent a year) and rebates 25 percent of all revenues to protect low income families from any rising costs via refundable credits.
  • Taxing the Rich
    • For the richest 2 percent who make more than $250,000 annually, rates will return to Clinton-era levels.
  • Ending the mortgage interest tax deduction for yachts and vacation homes
  • Closing the “trust fund loophole” for the children of billionaires
  • Taxing the Too Big to Fail banks
    • President Obama’s Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee would charge a fee of 7 basis points (.07 percent) on assets exceeding $50 billion. The fee is designed to raise needed revenue while discouraging excessive borrowing from major financial institutions, including those that contributed to the 2008 financial collapse – Citigroup, J.P. Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo, and American International Group, to name just a few.

It all really comes down to priorities. For example, the People’s Budget restores SNAP and child nutrition program (at a cost of $21 billion from 2016-2025), reduces the deductibility of corporate meals and entertainment by 25% (which will bring in $70 billion from 2016-2025). Which would YOU rather fund?

The People’s Budget also cuts some subsidies to the rich you may not even know about. Did you know that millionaires can use the mortgage interest tax deduction…for their YACHTS?

The Congressional Progressive Caucus eliminates the mortgage interest tax deduction for vacation homes and yachts, and end the deductibility of executive bonuses (which will bring in $14 billion and $51 billion, respectively, from 2016-2025), and helps to fund Universal Pre-K (which is estimated to cost $66 billion from 2016-2025).

But our favorite coverage of the People’s Budget Comes from the One Percent News Network.

1% News: You say that this budget will create a lot of jobs. But by crafting a budget that gets rid of a lot of the loopholes for the wealthy and corporations, you’re going to throw untold numbers of lobbyists and corporate lawyers out of work! How do you answer that concern?

Rep. Keith Ellison: We have trade adjustment assistance in the budget, so if they lose their jobs lobbying for loopholes and such, they can get trained on how to be an electrician or a carpenter.

Read the People’s Budget by the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Image via BNALabor/Employment on Twitter

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