A Democratic framework on a tax plan? Not quite. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced yesterday that the Senate, House, and White House have agreed to a “framework” on how to pay for the $3.5 trillion spending package they hope to pass this fall under budget reconciliation. But few lawmakers had even seen what was described as “a menu of options.” Other key Senate Democrats, from Budget Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders to moderate Krysten Sinema were surprised by the announcement. Sanders, who did see the framework, said there was “not a whole lot” new in it.
Meanwhile, the White House prepares for a possible government shutdown. It’s standard practice: The Office of Management & Budget is reminding federal agencies to plan for a potential shutdown. The government will run out of funding in six days, absent congressional passage of a stop-gap spending bill.
And the Biden Administration reports the wealthiest 400 families pay an average income tax rate of 8.2 percent. Between 2010 and 2018, the OMB estimates that billionaires paid 8.2 percent of their income in federal income taxes. The analysis included unrealized capital gains and other income that goes largely untaxed. Forbes reported in 2018 those 400 families each held at least $2.1 billion in wealth.
What is the shift to electric cars doing to other countries’ fuel tax collection? The Wall Street Journal reports (paywall) on several countries that have offered tax incentives to drivers who buy new electric vehicles. The incentives are part of broader efforts to cut carbon emissions. But in places such as Europe where more EVs are hitting the road, fuel tax revenue is falling. The problem: That revenue often comprises a significant share of public revenue. Now under consideration: Road-pricing, or vehicle-mileage taxes.
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