A group of nearly 20 wealthy Americans on Monday released a letter asking for all 2020 presidential hopefuls to support a “moderate wealth tax” on the richest one-tenth of the richest 1 percent of Americans.
“America has a moral, ethical and economic responsibility to tax our wealth more. A wealth tax could help address the climate crisis, improve the economy, improve health outcomes, fairly create opportunity, and strengthen our democratic freedoms,” the letter says, as published by The New York Times.
“Instituting a wealth tax is in the interest of our republic,” it continues.
The document is signed by financier George Soros, Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, heirs like Abigail Disney and others.
The letter calls for the tax revenue to be used in “smart investments for our future,” including addressing climate change, providing student loan debt relief and universal child care, modernizing infrastructure and providing tax credits for low-income families.
The document outlines six “key reasons” for instituting the tax, ranging from allotting more resources for health issues like the opioid crisis to addressing faith in democratic institutions.
“In our republic, it is the patriotic duty of all Americans to contribute what they can to the success of the country, and the wealthiest are no exception. Others have put far more on the line for America. Those of us in the richest 1/10 of the richest 1% should be proud to pay a bit more of our fortune forward to America’s future. We’ll be fine — taking on this tax is the least we can do to strengthen the country we love,” the letter reads.
Ian Simmons and Liesel Pritzker Simmons, co-founders of the Blue Haven Initiative, an impact investment organization, told the Times they came up with the idea and acquired all of the 19 signatures over the last two weeks. One of the names is listed as “anonymous."
“We thought it would be a good idea,” Ian Simmons told the Times. “Liesel and I decided to reach out to some other folks to see if they thought it was a good idea, too.”
The letter specifically highlights Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenAmerica can end poverty among its elderly citizens Senate GOP signals they'll help bail out Biden's Fed chair Misguided recusal rules lock valuable leaders out of the Pentagon MORE’s (D-Mass.) plan to tax “only 75,000 of the wealthiest families in the country,” and it cites South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Uber - Build Back Better items on chopping block Buttigieg says delay in climate action will cost lives amid reports of Manchin roadblock Sunday shows - Buttigieg warns supply chain issues could stretch to next year MORE (D) and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) as being “already supportive of the idea” of a tax on the wealthiest citizens.