Should Millionaires Pay As Much As The Rest Of Us?

Two recent polls show support for proposed "Buffett Rule."

Do you think millionaires should pay taxes similar to the middle class?

A new Gallup poll released Friday shows a majority of Americans support the proposed Buffett Rule, which would require individuals earning $1 million or more per year to pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes.

The bill, intended to prevent the wealthy from paying a lower actual tax rate than most middle class workers, is named for billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who has argued that he should not be allowed to pay a lower tax rate than his secretary.

President Barack Obama has recently pushed this tax policy, and the Senate votes on it this week.

The survey, conducted April 9 to 12 among 1,016 adults (with a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points) found that 60 percent of adults support enacting such a policy, while 37 percent oppose it.

By significant margins, both independents (63 to 33 percent) and Democrats (74 to 24 percent) supported the measure. Republicans opposed it by a smaller margin of 54 to 43 percent.

Another poll conducted by CNN shows that seven out of 10 — or nearly three-quarters of Americans — support the proposed legislation.

In Pleasanton, the median household income in 2010 was $120,094 and the average household income was $159,045.

The percentage of household incomes at $200,000 and higher was almost 22 percent.

To compare, in Danville, the median household income in 2010 was $146,969 and the average household income was $198,103.

The percentage of household incomes at $200,000 and higher in that town was almost 32 percent.

Do you support the proposed Buffett Rule? Take a moment to vote below, and tell us what you think in the comments section.

ROSEMARIE PEASE April 19, 2012 at 01:12 PM
If passed it would only save each taxpayer $10.87 which would hardly take care of the deficit, it is a made up problem to disguise the real problem of spending more than we have WITH NO BUDGET.
HRoark April 19, 2012 at 04:05 PM
The "so-called" Buffet Rule is only the current administration's latest attempt to stir envy and class warfare. It preys upon the worst parts of human nature and requires near total ignorance to gain traction. Why is it the investment income is taxed at a lower rate than employment income? It is an incentive for people with money (capital) to put their own funds at risk in hope of receiving a return greater than a bank CD. This incentive is the life blood of free enterprise. How many employees run the risk of losing money when we go to work in the morning? Q: What is the more likely result if this incentive to invest were removed? A. The rich pay their fair share and we'd all be better off B. The value of your own pension fund, IRA, 401(k) would plummet leaving you completely dependent on government C. Companies starved for investment capital would be forced to downsize further driving up the unemployment rate Think about it people. This is not a democrat, republican issue. Your freedom is at stake. This cynical form of propaganda to stir one group's jealousy in order to confiscate the property of another group has been around for as long as their have been tyrants.
Voter with an ID April 19, 2012 at 05:04 PM
Ironic, that this latest class envy ploy is named after the businessman who is currently contesting his own 1.3 billion dollar tax liability. Even if this political maneuver were to pass, it would do very little to reduce the deficit, as was falsely claimed by the small minds pushing this punitive measure.
Sandra April 19, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Buffet does not pay "income" taxes, he pays taxes on his investments, which is a much lower rate so people will be willing to invest in our economy since there is risk involved. His secretary makes $260,000, so don't feel too sorry for her. The loop holes for large bussiness is what needs to be taken care of. General Electric payed "0" in taxes last year. Now, the head of GE is working for the White House.
Mike April 19, 2012 at 07:28 PM
We have a spending problem not a revenue problem. Only uninformed people want higher taxes. If you don't know what's going on in our country please duty home and don't vote.
Christina Maehr April 19, 2012 at 07:55 PM
Who exactly is "the rest of us?" I'm below (but near) the Pleasanton median income and I only paid 1% in income taxes this year. More than 55% of voters do NOT pay any income taxes. I don't think the wealthy should evade paying, but it terrifies me that in our government "by" the people, the majority of people can now vote themselves as many benefits as they want at no clear expense to themselves. I think every new tax (on the wealthy or otherwise) should require EVERY voter to pay in at least an extra $1 per month... That would bring in a billion dollars AND we'd see if people really want more taxes or if they'd prefer to cut the entitlement programs that constitute the majority of government spending. It's easy to vote for benefits that cost you nothing, but let's learn a little lesson from Greece; people will ALWAYS want more, even if taking it destroys the very fabric of their society.
Chuck Bierdeman April 19, 2012 at 10:22 PM
Interesting that no one yet answered the question directly. Yes. Millionaires should pay a similar percentage of taxes as the middle class. Why are we trying to protect millionaires? Are YOU a millionaire? I assure you that millionaires can (and do) speak for and take care of themselves. Consider this: • Millionaires earn money from investing in profitable companies. • Profitable companies make money by providing products and services. • Products and services are created by workers. • Workers use tax payer funded infrastructure (i.e. roads and utilities) to get to work so companies can sell products and services and millionaires can get rich from their investments. Since millionaires receive more revenue than normal workers from the same infrastructure that we all use and our taxes pay for, then they should pay at least as much of a percentage as the rest of us (probably more, but I won’t go there, let’s leave it with an equal percentage). Millionaires should consider taxes a cost of doing business, thus ensuring workers can get to their jobs and generate revenue for the wealthy.
Sandra April 19, 2012 at 10:42 PM
Everyone should pay their fair share. My household income is well under $100,000. and I am not for raising taxes just on the rich. Chuck, you left out the part where those rich employers hire US, the people so we can purchase goods like cars, homes, etc. and help provide jobs for others. This is the best country there is and unfortunately some don't appreciate how they got their wealth. (big or small) There is no money fairy and EVERYONE needs to put some skin in the game.
Chuck Bierdeman April 19, 2012 at 11:09 PM
Hi Sandra, I don't think that you and I are in disagreement: everyone should pay their fair share (skin in the game). As for the rich hiring people, some do (as employers), some don't (i.e. investors), either way I agree that they are definitely Investing in people and as such they earn profits from doing so (or lose money if they make bad choices). This is capitalism and this is good. Employers and investors will continue to employ and invest even if they have to pay a fair share of their profits - same as we have to pay a share of our earnings. If you and I (hypothetically speaking) pay a tax rate of 30% why shouldn’t the rich? I don't understand why regular people want to pay a higher tax percentage than they want rich people to pay.
Al Shumate April 20, 2012 at 12:27 AM
And just how much money does Buffett have stashed away that those rules would not touch that he will get income off of that would not be reported?
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