Williamson announces poverty plan with support for universal basic income, $15 minimum wage

Williamson announces poverty plan with support for universal basic income, $15 minimum wage
© Greg Nash

Author and 2020 presidential candidate Marianne WilliamsonMarianne WilliamsonThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden looks to stretch lead in Tuesday contests Pelosi: 'I usually always cast my vote for a woman' Pelosi: 'We'll have a woman president' someday MORE on Wednesday released a plan aimed at reducing poverty.

In a press release, Williamson's campaign outlined the plan, which calls for the U.S. to adopt a nationwide $15 minimum wage and endorses a universal basic income (UBI) of $1,000 per month.

The plan is funded in part by a 2 percent wealth tax on fortunes greater than $50 million and a 3 percent tax on fortunes greater than $1 billion as well as a "tiny tax" on Wall Street trading.


The plan's UBI is similar to the one championed by Williamson's 2020 rival Andrew YangAndrew YangJack Dorsey committing billion to coronavirus relief efforts Campaigns face attack ad dilemma amid coronavirus crisis Andrew Yang: Calling coronavirus 'China virus' only used to incite 'hostility' MORE. Other tenets of the plan include expanding the earned income tax credit and restoring funding to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) grant program.

Williamson also calls for implementing a public Medicare option, reducing the costs of prescription drugs through government regulation and expanding Social Security benefits, which she said would be paid for by ending the cap on payroll taxes.

“The way to have a vibrant society, and an abundant economy, is to help people thrive. To uncap their dreams. To unleash their spirits," Williamson told The Hill by email.

"Our government has moved away from that kind of thinking; we’ve moved away from the kinds of policies that work toward the eradication of poverty. Poverty in America is a moral problem and this plan will jump start the economic, social and political revolution needed to strengthen the American people," she continued.

Williamson emerged as a star of the early 2020 primary debate season on social media but has since faded in the polls, failing to qualify for the September and October debates. She also does not appear to have qualified for the November debate set for next week.

Updated at 10:55 p.m.