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At campaign events in Michigan this week, Kamala Harris has called for a complete repeal of the Republicans' $1.5 trillion Big Fat Tax Cuts for Rich Fuckwads so they can be replaced by a tax plan that would actually cut taxes for lower and middle income taxpayers instead. Following an appearance in Detroit Monday evening, Harris clarified that by repealing it, she meant "Get rid of the whole thing," which sure sounds like a repeal all right!

While Harris has been talking "repeal and replace" since at least last fall, before she even declared her candidacy, Bloomberg Politics is for some reason treating Harris's position as something new and bold. Glad they caught up!

Her campaign spokesman Ian Sams said she'd seek to replace the law with her proposed LIFT Act, a nearly $3 trillion refundable tax cut focused on middle income earners.

Harris's stance goes further than most Democrats, who have called for repealing parts of the 2017 law that grants steep tax breaks for corporations and upper earners, as well as restoring the full state and local tax deduction, which was limited to $10,000.

Of course, there is also this sober tut-tutting:

Getting rid of the entire law would also mean repealing the doubling of the standard deduction and higher child tax credit, which benefit middle-class Americans. While the law as a whole is unpopular, those provisions poll well.

Well, yes, but replacing those provisions with the LIFT tax refunds -- which we outlined when Harris proposed them in the Senate last fall -- would mean a far better overall tax deal for middle and low-income taxpayers. But yes, it would be a bit of a change, and it goes without saying that Republicans will campaign on how getting a much better deal would really be bad for you, just as they've argued that Medicare for All would make us give up our beloved too-expensive private health insurance, if we have it at all.


Since she was addressing the American Federation of Teachers, Harris also touted her plan to improve teacher pay nationwide, which was warmly received, because wouldn't it be nice to actually pay good teachers enough to keep teaching?

Harris derided critics of her education plan, using a mocking tone to repeat something she said she's frequently asked -- "Well, how you gon' pay for it?" -- which drew laughter from the crowd.

"On Day One," she said, "we're going to repeal that tax bill that benefited the top 1 percent and corporations."

Bloomberg notes, in more detail, the OMINOUS EFFECT of repealing the Republican tax cuts on ordinary folks.

Repealing the entire 2017 law would affect nearly every taxpayer by increasing rates and cutting the child tax credit in half to $1,000. It would also decrease the standard deduction to $12,700 down from $24,000 for a couple filing jointly. It would also increase the corporate rate to 35 percent, as well as again require American corporations to pay U.S. taxes on all their offshore profits.

This is a lovely example of spin: It's all factual enough, because the numbers are real, but it leaves out the tiny detail that the benefits of the tax cuts for "every taxpayer" are definitely outweighed by the benefits that went to corporations and the very wealthy.

Now, to be sure, the Bloomberg piece goes on to list some details of what Harris's proposed replacement plan would entail: a refundable tax credit of up to $3,000 a year for individuals or $6,000 for couples filing jointly. ("Refundable" means you get the money even if you didn't pay that much in taxes in the first place.) Families with incomes under $100,000 would qualify, and taxpayers could choose to receive the refund in a lump sum at tax time, or have it paid out monthly to supplement their income.

Two BIG things the Bloomberg piece leaves out:

Numero Uno, the LIFT Act would provide those payments in addition to existing tax benefits, so while the Trump plan's larger child tax credit would return to its previous rate of $1000, the LIFT credit would more than replace the difference for families at the lower end of the income scale.

Numero Two-o, the Bloomberg piece conveniently leaves out any mention of the overall economic effects of the two tax plans, which we discussed in greater detail in our previous look at Harris's proposal. The Republican corporate tax cuts were mostly plowed into stock buybacks that didn't really result in wider benefits to anyone besides the already wealthy, and haven't noticeably increased economic growth -- which has continued improving on roughly the same pace as it has since Barack Obama's presidency.

Harris's plan to direct cash to lower and middle-income families, on the other hand, is projected to help a hell of a lot of people a hell of a lot more:

As many as 80 million Americans would benefit, Harris's office has estimated, with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities calculating that the proposal would lift 9 million people out of poverty, including nearly 3 million kids.

And where tax cuts for the wealthy have never resulted in long-term economic benefits, regular people tend to spend their extra cash or pay down their personal debts, expanding the economy "from the middle," as Barack Obama always talked about. And for people on the edge of poverty, it would create greater financial stability -- more consistent ability to buy stuff, less missed work, less job turnover, more small savings, and OMG even less reliance on payday lenders, amen and hallelujah.

Guess what we're saying here is that we weren't really big fans of Bloomberg's allegedly "straight news" reporting here. But we're a big fan of Kamala Harris's tax proposal, and we'd like to see it go even farther. That's about it.

[Bloomberg Politics / Atlantic / Vox / CNBC]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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