Billionaire tax proposal would raise $557B: JCT

A proposal from Sen. Ron Wyden to tax billionaires’ investment gains annually would raise $557 billion over 10 years, according to preliminary estimates from the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) released by the Oregon Democrat’s office Friday.

Wyden said in a statement that the finding “makes crystal clear the extent to which the tax code is simply not equipped to tax billionaires fairly, or ensure they pay any taxes at all.”

“Working Americans like nurses and firefighters are rightly disgusted by the status quo. If we don’t fix this problem now, it’s only going to get worse, with billions in income from the wealthiest people on the planet continuing to go completely untaxed,” he added.

Currently, people do not pay taxes on investment gains until they sell the assets.

Wyden released a proposal late last month to change how the wealthiest taxpayers’ investment gains are taxed. His proposal would apply to about 700 taxpayers who have assets of more than $1 billion or income of more than $100 million for three consecutive years.

Under Wyden’s proposal, eligible taxpayers would pay taxes annually on gains of tradable assets such as stock. For nontradeable assets such as real estate, they would not pay taxes annually on the gains but instead would pay a charge on top of their capital gains taxes when they sell the investments.

JCT estimates that much of the revenue raised under Wyden’s proposal would come in the earlier years of the plan, as billionaires transition to the new system.

Wyden had offered the proposal as a way to help pay for Democrats’ social spending bill, but the idea was not included in the White House’s framework. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has raised concerns about the proposal, as have many House Democrats. 

Tags billionaire tax Billionaire's tax Joe Manchin Ron Wyden

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