By Robert Schlesinger |
As we say in the Midwest, you do not fertilize a tree from the top down, you fertilize the roots. The "Buffet rule" reflects that kind of midwestern wisdom and decency.
It defies common sense that many middle-class Iowans should pay a higher tax rate than the 400 richest Americans, making over $110 million per year and paying only 18 percent in income taxes. Not only does this fly in the face of the common sense standards of a democratic society, but it also undermines the middle class, the backbone of the American economy, by helping to concentrate wealth among a very few rich Americans, and by denying our country the resources to make the investments that have sustained the middle class—everything from education to infrastructure—that has made America the strongest economy in the world.
The Buffet rule tackles this problem head on and levels the playing the field for America's middle class. It is part of legislation I recently introduced—the Rebuild America Act—and it should become law.
About Tom Harkin U.S. Senator
Jason Fichtner Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University
Chuck Collins Senior Scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies
Alan D. Viard Resident Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute
Jonathan Collegio Communications Director for American Crossroads
Chuck Marr Director of Federal Tax Policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities