News Release

Myth: Raising Taxes on Wealthy Kills Jobs


CHUCK COLLINS, chuckcollins7 at
Collins just wrote the piece “A Tax Plan to Rally Around: The Buffett Rule,” which states: “Over the last decade — and really over the last fifty years — the portion of income paid in taxes by our wealthiest citizens has steadily declined. In 1961, when Barack Obama was born, the effective rate paid by households with income over $1 million was 43 percent. Today it is 23 percent. The richer you are, as Warren Buffett has illustrated, the smaller the percentage of your income you pay.”

Collins is a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies where he directs the Program on Inequality and the Common Good; he is also co-founder of Wealth for the Common Good, a network of business leaders, high-income households and partners working together to promote shared prosperity and fair taxation. He is co-author of “The Moral Measure of the Economy” and, with Bill Gates Sr., of “Wealth and Our Commonwealth: Why America Should Tax Accumulated Fortunes.”

SCOTT KLINGER, scottklinger at
Klinger is director of Tax Policy for Business for Shared Prosperity. He said, “The notion that raising taxes on the wealthy will kill jobs is bunk. Job growth was much better before President Bush slashed taxes at the top and tilted the government even more heavily toward the big banks and corporations who killed millions of jobs by driving our economy off a cliff. Less than 3 percent of taxpayers with any business income make over $250,000 (couples) a year, and that includes corporate lobbyists, Wall Street investment partners, big business CEOs paid to sit on the boards of other big companies and others not commonly thought of as small business owners. It’s actually small businesses that create most of the nation’s new jobs, and they need the government to invest in 21st century infrastructure, education and economic development that tax revenue supports.”

FRANK KNAPP, sbchamber at
Knapp is president of the Knapp Agency and president and CEO of the South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce. He said today: “In the last decade, wealthy Americans have gotten a trillion dollars in tax cuts, and we have a jobs crisis instead of job creation. Contrary to myth, money a business owner pays in employee wages or other business expenses is not included in the owner’s taxable income. Most small business owners have middle-class incomes, and personal income taxes don’t figure into our hiring decisions. Small business job creation is driven by demand for products and services, not tax cuts. When government cuts teachers, police, road and school repair, health care, unemployment insurance and other public services to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy that hurts Main Street businesses.”