Today POLITICO Arena asks:
Is the Buffett Rule a step toward tax fairness? Or, as Hill Republicans argue, is it a gimmick that would do nothing to boost job growth or make a real dent in paying down the nation’s ballooning debt? Which side of the argument will win politically in November?
Not only will the “Buffett Rule” not reduce the national debt, but because it’s meant to offset the revenue lost from changes in the Alternative Minimum Tax, the combined effect will be to increase the debt. To quote from Saturday’s Wall Street Journal: “The Joint Tax Committee—the official scoring referee on tax bills—calculates that the combination of AMT repeal for the middle class and the Buffett tax would add $793.3 billion to the debt over the next decade.”
Far worse than that, as a tax on capital, the Buffett Rule will drive investment, and jobs, overseas. But will “fairness” win in November, even if not this week in Congress? As a Democratic wag once said, “You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, and that’s good enough.” We shall see.