Why Suggesting A Tax Hike Right Now Is A Terrible Idea

U.S. President Joe Biden puts on a face covering as he concludes his remarks in the State Dining Room of the White House on March 15, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Our country is just now starting to claw its way out of the worst economic slump since the Great Recession.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit, state and local governments rushed to shut down restaurants, bars, gyms, and any other small business where people may be in close proximity to one another. Workers were forced to work from home, away from their colleagues, friends, and family, isolated except for what could be seen on a computer screen.

At the height of the pandemic last April, unemployment hit 14.4%, the second-highest rate in the post-World War II era, according to Pew Research. The downturn took America from one of its best economic periods, with unemployment at a historically low 3.8%, to one of its worst – all because government leaders panicked and then saw an opportunity to take control.

The excuse was the virus, which has around a 99% survival rate (still deadlier than the seasonal flu, but disproportionately deadly to the panic induced by government leaders). People were told their jobs weren’t “essential,” even though every job is essential to the person relying on it to pay their bills.

Now, just as we’re on the cusp of recovery, reports indicate that President Joe Biden wants to raise taxes.

Unidentified sources told Bloomberg News that the hike Biden is planning would be the largest in nearly 30 years. Yes, Biden campaigned on making life worse for Americans by raising their taxes and suggesting he would shut down the country at a moment’s notice, but it still stings to hear this might be one campaign promise he would keep.

The Hill reported that the planned federal tax hike would include: “raising the corporate tax from 21 percent to 28 percent; increasing the income tax rate on people making more than $400,000; expanding the estate tax; paring back tax preferences on pass-through businesses such as limited-liability companies; and setting up a higher capital gains tax rate for individuals making at least $1 million.”

Sure, some of these tax hikes are said to be limited to the wealthy, but those costs will surely be passed on to lower- and middle-class Americans. The wealthy also have the ability to avoid tax hikes in a way lower-income people can’t. And rest assured, hiking the corporate tax rate by nearly a third, expanding the estate tax, and raising taxes on LLCs, will increase the tax-burden for non-wealthy Americans.

An independent analysis of the tax hike plan Biden campaigned on, conducted by the Tax Policy Center, determined it would raise taxes on Americans by $2.1 trillion over 10 years, or $210 billion a year.

That might not seem like much considering how many trillions were spent on “stimulus”  checks to millions of Americans who — in many cases — didn’t need them, while failing to really help those who did.

Biden has also promised to repeal the Trump tax cuts, which, though they decreased taxes on the wealthy (because the wealthy pay vastly more in taxes than any other income bracket), also helped lower-income Americans by providing them more money in each paycheck.

Biden has at times said he would only repeal the Trump tax cuts for the wealthy, but again, those costs will be passed down.

Even suggesting a tax hike right now, when Americans are still worried about the virus and wondering whether they will lose their livelihood again, is a terrible idea. Biden is essentially telling people that as soon as the economy is doing better, as soon as people are again comfortable paying their bills, as soon as they stop fearing a government-imposed economic shutdown, he will raise taxes.

What a horrible thing to say to a country still recovering.

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