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President Obama’s Buffett Rule Asks Millionaires, Billionaires to Pay Their Fair Share

The President believes that millionaires and billionaires shouldn’t pay lower tax rates than firefighters and teachers. That’s why he proposed the Buffett Rule – to close tax loopholes to ensure that millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share and don’t pay less in taxes than middle-class families.
  • President Obama is speaking in Florida today about the Buffett Rule, which closes loopholes and special tax breaks that let the wealthiest pay a lower tax rate than many middle-class families. Vice President Biden will continue this discussion on Thursday in New Hampshire, where he’ll contrast his and the President’s record on tax fairness with the Republicans’.
  • America prospers when everyone does their fair share, plays by the same rules, and has the same shot at success. We can no longer ask everything from the middle class and seniors while asking nothing from those at the top. The Buffett Rule asks millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share.

    Please see this tax calculator that helps explain the Buffett Rule.

  • We have a deficit that needs to be paid down. And we need to invest in an economy built to last – that creates jobs of the future and makes things the rest of the world buys – not one built on outsourcing, loopholes and risky financial deals that jeopardize our entire economy and threaten the security of the middle class.
  • That means we have to make choices. When it comes to paying down the deficit and investing in our future, should we ask middle-class Americans to pay even more at a time when their budgets are already stretched? Or should we ask some of the wealthiest Americans, who aren’t today paying their fair share, to do so? That’s the choice.
  • Over the last decade, we’ve spent hundreds of billions of dollars on what was supposed to be a temporary tax break for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans. Now we’re on track to spend almost a trillion more.
  • If we don’t ask the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share, then one of two things will happen. Either we won’t get our deficit under control, or we can’t invest in what we need to grow our economy. For instance:

    Students would have less help paying for college in the face of rising tuition costs.

    Manufacturers would have a harder time competing with the rest of the world.

    We would have less to invest in innovation so Americans have good-paying jobs of the future.

  • The first step is asking everyone to do their fair share. President Obama and many Democrats, Republicans, and independents agree – even Warren Buffett agrees. Buffett wrote in a New York Times op-ed, “My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It’s time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice.” This isn’t class warfare; it’s math. It’s common sense.
  • We can’t return to the same Republicans’ failed policies of “you’re on your own” economics if we’re serious about rebuilding the middle class. Trickle-down economics invests too little in our people and in our future – it’s an excuse to leave the middle class behind while letting just a few at the top prosper.
  • Mitt Romney opposes the Buffett Rule, because it would mean people like himself would have to pay more. Romney thinks millionaires and billionaires should keep paying lower tax rates than middle-class families. In fact, Romney’s not paying his fair share – in 2010, Romney paid a tax rate of only 13.9 percent, well below the rate paid by many middle-class Americans.
  • Romney would protect special tax rates for Wall Street investors and he opposes the Buffett Rule. He looks out for people just like him – millionaires who pay a lower tax rate than many police, firefighters, teachers and small business owners.
  • Romney’s tax plan doesn’t ask millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share. In fact, it does the opposite.

    It gives the average millionaire a $250,000 tax cut.

    To pay for his tax plan, Romney would increase the deficit and make deep cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.