Buffett rule with a loophole
To the Editor:
I have grown cynical watching our Rhode Island politicians, but nothing I have seen can top Senator Sheldon Whitehouse's plan to tax the rich (Monday, April 16, Providence Journal). He gives us his standard song and dance about how much he cares about the working man, and how he wants the rich to "pay their fair share." He then proposes his tax plan, but with a loophole in it that will allow the rich to pay no federal income taxes at all!
As noted in the Journal: "Whitehouse kept in his bill a tax break that was lacking from an earlier version of the "Buffett rule" that the Obama administration embraced. The bill for considerations Monday (Whitehouse's bill) exempts (from federal taxes the interest paid by – my addition) tax-free municipal bonds..."
The Journal goes on to add, as an editorial comment in its support of all things liberal, "...cities and towns use as an alternative to raising local property taxes." Actually, at the local level these bonds are supported by local property taxes, or local income taxes and are funded specifically by tax increasing bond issues. That is how they get paid off.
So, here we have Shifty Sheldon playing to the crowd, attacking the rich, but then proposing a tax bill with a built-in tax loophole that will allow the rich to invest in tax-free bonds, clip the coupons and pay zero percent on federal income tax! He doesn't even have enough respect for the voters to camouflage his actions – he puts the "Rich Pay No Taxes" loophole right into his bill!
The Sheldon Whitehouse tax bill is an act of fraud against the American taxpayer. For Shifty Sheldon to attack the rich but then provide them a loophole to allow them to sit on their butts, clip their coupons, collect the interest that we the taxpayers pay on those bonds, and pay zero percent federal tax is an act of fraud!
Shame on him. And shame on us if we re-elect Shifty Sheldon.
Joseph H. Weaver
Warwick Republican Chairman