Statement from Margarida Jorge, Executive Director of Health Care for America Now, on the introduction of Senator Warren’s wealth tax:
“Billionaires added $1.2 trillion to their wealth over just the first 10 months of the COVID pandemic while 12 million people have lost healthcare, 17 million have lost work, and over 100,000 businesses have shut their doors. Just two days ago, every Republican the US House of Representatives against the American Rescue Plan that would make healthcare more affordable, extend unemployment benefits for the jobless, and provide state and local governments with more resources to vaccinate the public, safely reopen schools, and ensure rural communities have the resources they need to make it through COVID.
Senator Warren’s wealth tax bill would help address the growing gap between the super-rich and the rest of us, who are struggling to get by or who have limited opportunities for economic mobility and prosperity in today’s economy. Instead of the rich just getting richer, the bill requires the wealthy to pay a fairer share of taxes toward building an economy that works for everyone, not just millionaires and billionaires. When everyone pays their fair share, we can make investments that rebuild the middle class by creating good paying jobs, funding education and public services, and making healthcare more affordable so that everyone gets an equitable chance to lead a healthy life and prosper.
To address the urgent needs laid bare by this pandemic, we need the 100,000 wealthiest households — the top 0.05% — in this country to finally pay their fair share after years of tax dodging and avoidance. Lawmakers have an opportunity to level the playing field by making long overdue improvements in America’s tax system, closing tax loopholes that allow the rich to play by a different set of rules than the rest of us. and raising the resources we need to invest in a better future for everyone.”
At $4.1 trillion, the total wealth of America’s 661 billionaires is nearly double the $2.4 trillion in total wealth held by the bottom half of the population, 165 million Americans. In states like Florida, the growth in billionaire wealth is enough to pay for state budget shortfalls many times over.
HCAN State Billionaires reports: