Every day is a good day to talk about taxing the rich.
Whether the message is on a sweatshirt or something more formal , the facts are the same. Politicians spent the better part the last 40 years cutting taxes for the rich – expecting wealth to “trickle down” to the rest of us (spoiler alert: it doesn't).
In order to reshape our economy and make it work for all of us — not just those who can self-fund their trips to space — we absolutely must Tax the Rich. That’s why Alexandria has been pushing for higher taxes on the rich and large profitable corporations in the Build Back Better bill.
In case you get into a conversation today about what exactly we mean when we say “tax the rich,” here’s some more info to help you out:
So, why do we need to tax the rich?
- The super rich pay lower taxes than the poorest Americans. The United States has a regressive tax system in which the richest people actually pay lower effective tax rates across all levels of government than the poorest people in our country. Seems hard to believe, right? But it’s true.1
- Taxes on the rich are much lower than they used to be. Check out this graph from The New York Times comparing rates from 1950 to 2018.2
- Two men — Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos — own more wealth than the bottom 40% of Americans combined.3
- During the pandemic, U.S. billionaires saw their wealth go up 55% from $2.95 trillion to $4.56 trillion. Just the gains they made over the last year of this pandemic alone could pay for almost 70% of Biden’s jobs plan.4
- U.S. income inequality has returned to Gilded Age levels from the early 1900s. Our inequality levels are the highest of all G7 countries (UK, Italy, Japan, Canada, Germany, France).5,6
- CEOs at large companies in the U.S. now make an astonishing 264 times what the average U.S. worker makes.7 In 1989, the ratio was 58-to-1, and in 1965, it was 20-to-1.8
- Polls show Americans don’t believe the rich pay their fair share, but Republicans keep lowering their taxes. Gallup polls as far back as 1992 have shown that the vast majority of Americans want to tax the rich more.9 Even then, Presidents Bush and Trump pushed through massive tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans.
Are you fired up and ready to tax the rich?
Good — because we can’t win this fight without grassroots activism and organizing. If you know someone who might benefit from reading the facts above, please forward them this email. When the rich finally pay their fair share, we can have the funds to provide universal Pre-K, transition our economy off of fossil fuels, rebuild our crumbling schools, and so much more.
Thanks for continuing the conversation,
– Team AOC