In Trump’s economics speech on Monday, he again professed himself to be a champion of the middle class. “No one will gain more from these proposals than low-and-middle income Americans,” Trump said about he and the GOP’s economic plan. “The rich will pay their fair share, but no one will pay so much that it destroys jobs, or undermines our ability to compete.”
Unfortunately, Trump’s tax policies are disproportionately favorable to the most wealthy Americans, people like himself and the gang of billionaires that he has set up as his economic advisory panel. Though he did not use the term “trickle down economics,” he espouses many of its tenets so that he can get tax breaks for himself and fellow millionaires in the guise of creating jobs. I will start off each paragraph with a quote from Trump, followed by commentary.
“My plan will reduce the current number of brackets from 7 to 3, and dramatically streamline the process. We will work with House Republicans on this plan, using the same brackets they have proposed: 12, 25 and 33 percent. For many American workers, their tax rate will be zero.” Let’s look at that 33 percent number there for the wealthiest Americans. That lowers the tax rate for the richest Americans by a whopping 16.6%, to 33 percent from its current rate of 39.6 percent. He didn’t tell you that part. We don’t know how many millions of dollars this would save Donald Trump each year, as he continues to refuse to release his tax returns.
“Finally, no family will have to pay the death tax. American workers have paid taxes their whole lives, and they should not be taxed again at death – it’s just plain wrong. We will repeal it.” This would again benefit the wealthy in a much greater way than anyone in the lower tax brackets. Donald Trump’s heirs would benefit tremendously if the death tax were eliminated, saving millions if not billions of dollars when Trump shuffles off to that great golden tower in the sky. The children of a waitress at Denny’s will not be benefiting much from the elimination of the estate tax, but Trump’s offspring most certainly will.
“My plan will also help reduce the cost of childcare by allowing parents to fully deduct the average cost of childcare spending from their taxes.” Sounds great, right? Poor families need childcare, and who doesn’t love a tax break? Well, poor families don’t really love tax breaks, as they would often make so little as to pay few taxes. Upper middle class and wealthy people however, would benefit greatly. A millionaire with a $50000 a year nanny could deduct that, while a single mother making $15000 gets no benefit as she pays few taxes anyway.
The New York Times did the math:
For a family making $500,000 that spends $10,000 a year on child care, the tax deduction would be worth about $3,960. For a family that earns $50,000, because it faces a lower tax rate, it would be worth only $1,500. And many lower- and lower-middle-income families pay little or no federal income tax, so a tax deduction would not help them.
“The United States also has the highest business tax rate among the major industrialized nations of the world(It doesn’t, actually), at 35 percent. It’s almost 40 percent when you add in taxes at the state level…Under my plan, no American company will pay more than 15% of their business income in taxes. Small businesses will benefit the most from this plan.” Corporate profits are at an all time high as wages for the average worker are decreasing. If Trump truly cared about the lower and middle class, wouldn’t he suggest raising the minimum wage instead of instituting tax policies to let corporations keep more of their truly astounding profits? He’s not even talking about a 16.6 percent decrease for the rich, he’s talking about a 57 percent decrease in corporate taxes. Think of that. While wages stagnate and corporate profits soar to new heights, this billionaire is proposing that we further cut taxes by more than half to these corporations, all while wrapping himself in a populist mantle.
Trump makes no proposal about where this lost tax revenue will be made up. The Tax Foundation estimates that $2.4 trillion dollars in lost tax revenue over the next 10 years according to the GOP tax plan.
It is truly amazing to watch Donald Trump, the cocky playboy billionaire, paint himself as a man of the people, a populist and just one of the the “folks.” But even a cursory analysis by a layman of he and the GOP’s tax proposals show that they are aimed to help the wealthiest citizens of our country, while benefiting the lower and middle classes only slightly, or sometimes not at all. It should come as no surprise, as Donald Trump and his family have surrounded themselves with Wall Street hedge fund managers and other millionaires to institute these policies that would directly benefit them, to the detriment of the American people.