A Budget Plan for the People

Obama’s plan is a populist political agenda very much aligned with his recent State of the Union speech. It’s ambitious and bold and will leave many Republicans scrambling to explain why they don’t support it.

Posted on 02/3/15
By Marjorie E. Wood | Via Inequality.org
(Photo via video stream)
(Photo via video stream)

What do you need to know about the 2016 budget plan President Obama released this week? Mostly that it benefits ordinary Americans and pays for it by taxing the rich.

 

It’s a long wish list (150-pages) but here are a few highlights:

  • This is a $4 trillion budget plan packed with all sorts of things for middle-class and poor families.
  • One of the big items on the wish list is a $478 billion public works infrastructure program for roads, bridges, and transit.
  • Working families are a big winner as it calls for increased spending on paid leave, universal preschool, and public education.
  • Another boon for families: new tax credit for working spouses and tripling of maximum child care tax credit.

 

If working families are the big winners here, who are the losers? The rich. Big banks. Corporations (especially when they hoard profits overseas).

 

Here are a few ways the rich would pay for this budget:

  • Tax increases for the wealthiest (estate tax & capital gains taxes)
  • Fees on big banks that are overly risky.
  • Mandatory taxes on corporate profits held overseas (but as David Dayen, Americans for Tax Fairness, Campaign for America’s Future, and others have pointed out, this part of the proposal should be much stronger to eliminate all favorable tax treatment for offshoring).

 

Obama’s plan is a populist political agenda very much aligned with his recent State of the Union speech. It’s ambitious and bold and will leave many Republicans scrambling to explain why they don’t support it.

 

The plan is more than just a symbolic wish list. It’s a way to define and shape the debate. Aiming so clearly to lift up working families, reduce income inequality, and pay for it by taxing the rich, this agenda comes at a time when most Americans think a little wealth redistribution sounds great. Of course, Republicans have already come out strongly against it. But the Obama administration just may be betting correctly that the people will be on the President’s side.

 

Dr. Marjorie E. Wood is managing editor of Inequality.org and a senior staff member of the Global Economy Project at the Institute for Policy Studies. 

This article first appeared on inequality.org. Click here to go to the original.

Check Also

US Charges India with Plotting to Assassinate Sikh Separatist in New York

The indictment, unsealed by federal prosecutors in New York, accuses the Indian national of orchestrating a meticulously planned plot to eliminate the Sikh separatist figure within the bustling environs of New York City.

Forget ‘Peace,’ Did Abraham Accords Set Stage for Israel-Gaza Conflict?

The Biden administration could have reversed Trump’s efforts, and placed pressure on Israel to halt these plans, as well as end its settlement expansion while making good on its promises and obligations under the peace process. Instead, the president continued Trump’s normalization efforts while breaking from presidential precedent and not even attempting to advance the peace process, all while issuing little to no criticism of the Israeli government’s violations.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from ViewsWeek

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading