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Conservative think tank comes out in support of taxing stock trade

Conservative think tank comes out in support of taxing stock trade

The founder and executive director of conservative think tank American Compass on Thursday announced his support for taxing stock trade, a position traditionally associated with progressives seeking to break up the influence of Wall Street investment banks. 

Oren Cass, a former Bain & Co. management consultant who also worked on Republican Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle The Hill's Morning Report - After high-stakes Biden-Putin summit, what now? MORE’s (Utah) 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns, proposed in a blog post on American Compass’s website that policymakers should consider various actions on the financial sector, including a “financial transactions tax on asset exchanges in the secondary market,” and raising “tax rates on short-term capital gains and the proceeds from speculation.” 

Cass said in an interview with Bloomberg published Thursday that some congressional Republicans have also indicated privately their support for transaction taxes and breaking up big banks. 

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Cass said taxes on stock trades are needed to compensate for the economic losses from decades of over-speculation and the lack of sustainable investment. 

“Investment means actually building something for the future that enhances our prosperity, but most of what we call investment isn’t that at all,” he said, adding that he wants to lay “the groundwork for what a kind of post-Trump conservatism should look like.”

The conservative economist said that with the upcoming retirements of a handful of Republican senators, including Pat ToomeyPatrick (Pat) Joseph ToomeyBlack women look to build upon gains in coming elections Watch live: GOP senators present new infrastructure proposal Sasse rebuked by Nebraska Republican Party over impeachment vote MORE (Pa.), Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntExcellence Act will expand mental health and substance use treatment access to millions Overnight Health Care: Takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision | COVID-19 cost 5.5 million years of American life | Biden administration investing billions in antiviral pills for COVID-19 Five takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision MORE (Mo.) and Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle The Hill's Morning Report - After high-stakes Biden-Putin summit, what now? MORE (N.C.), there will be an opportunity for younger GOP members to enter the arena and the possibility of a “multi-ethnic, working class conservatism.”

The support comes following a series of bipartisan concerns regarding the rapid surge in the stocks of GameStop and other traditionally-shorted stocks as a result of a buying frenzy among amateur traders. 

Members of both parties criticized stock trading app Robinhood after it temporarily restricted trading of stocks popularized by users on a Reddit forum, claiming that the move favored traditional investors and hedge funds. 

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A class-action suit has since been filed against the stock trading app, arguing that “purposefully, willfully, and knowingly removing the stock ‘GME’ [GameStop] from its trading platform in the midst of an unprecedented stock rise thereby deprived retail investors of the ability to invest in the open-market and manipulating the open-market.” 

Immediately after GameStop’s rapid surge, progressive lawmakers such as Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarYoung Turks founder on Democratic establishment: 'They lie nonstop' Hillary Clinton backs Shontel Brown in Ohio congressional race The Hill's Morning Report - Dems to go-it-alone on infrastructure as bipartisan plan falters MORE (D-Minn.) called for a small tax on stock trades to “reduce high frequency trading, a practice which drains profits from retail investors and benefits only the very rich,” she tweeted in late January. 

Omar previously teamed up with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Democrats facing tough reelections back bipartisan infrastructure deal The Hill's Morning Report - ObamaCare here to stay MORE (I-Vt.) on a proposal to eliminate student debt with a financial transaction tax.