Democrats’ Tax Plan: Back to the Future?

The Democrats have rolled out the tax plan on which they intend to run in November. It is, I think, revealing.

The Democrats propose to raise the top personal income tax rate back up to 39.6%, instead of the 37% to which it was reduced under the Trump tax cuts. But the other personal income tax cuts in the Republican package–the “crumbs”–will remain in place. So the Democrats have given up on trying to convince the 80+% of Americans who got a tax cut that they are better off with higher taxes.

The Democrats want to increase the corporate income tax rate from 21% to 25%, not all the way back to 35%, where it was before the Republican cuts. This proposal is an admission that the old tax rate was way too high, and hurt the U.S. economy. So why did the Democrats repeatedly block all efforts to reduce it? They are unwilling even to try to defend the stance they have taken for years in opposing Republican tax plans.

The Democrats also want to increase the estate tax by rolling back the exemption, a “tax the rich” move that is unpopular with voters. And they want to bring back the alternative minimum tax for millions of American families, another unpopular measure.

The Democrats’ tax plan is one more indication of how out of ammo they are. After years of opposing GOP tax cuts, they now admit that their position was, and is, untenable. The best they can say for their proposal is that it leaves most of the Trump tax cuts in place.


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