Michele Bachmann's minimum tax plan comes in the final days of her campaign (Adam Hunger/Reuters)
I'll abolish the tax code, the place where most of Washington's influence peddling occurs. I'll replace it with one that is simpler, fairer and flatter, in which every American pays something, even if it is $10 a year, because every American has a stake in America.
Now I know what you're thinking: Michele Bachmann is buying into the false claim that half of all Americans pay no taxes, and she's trying to reassure Republicans that the mythical moochers won't get a free ride under her administration. Of course, the truth is that thanks to payroll taxes as well as state and local taxes, virtually everybody who either earns or spends money during the course of a year pays taxes.
But there's another way to look at what she's saying, because under her tax proposal, capital gains taxes would be completely eliminated—and that would knock about 20,000 millionaires off the federal income tax rolls completely. Of course they would still pay state and local taxes, but their federal taxes would be eliminated—a savings of $500,000 on average.
With Bachmann's new plan, however, they'd all be required to pay $10, in the name of fairness. Seems reasonable to me—it's a win-win for everybody. They get a tax cut of $499,990 and we get the satisfaction of knowing that at least they are paying something. I just hope Newt Gingrich doesn't accuse her of socialism.
The only question I have is that if wealthy investors shouldn't pay taxes on their investment income, why should I have to pay taxes on my salary income? Can I get her $10 deal too?