Thursday, March 23, 2023

Play

A proposed flavored tobacco ban is back on the table in Minnesota, Trump attorney Evan Corcoran must testify in the documents probe, and a "clean slate" bill in Missouri would make "expungement" automatic.

Play

The Fed raises interest rates and reassures the banking system is sound, Norfolk Southern reaffirms a commitment to the people of East Palestine, and TikTok creators gather at the Capitol to support free expression.

Play

Finding childcare is a struggle everywhere, prompting North Carolina's Transylvania County to try a new approach. Maine is slowly building-out broadband access, but disagreements remain over whether local versus national companies should get the contracts, and specialty apps like "Farmers Dating" help those in small communities connect online.

Millionaires: Medicare Tax Proposal Just What the Doctor Ordered

Play

Thursday, March 16, 2023   

President Joe Biden's proposal to increase taxes on Americans earning more than $400,000 a year from 3.8% to 5% in order to shore up Medicare is being welcomed by an unlikely constituency, the ultrarich.

Morris Pearl, chair of the group Patriotic Millionaires and a former managing director at BlackRock, said there is more than enough money to fund Medicare. He argued the wealthiest Americans, especially those living off of their investments, can and should be paying more.

"Our country can go two different directions," Pearl asserted. "We can ask the financially challenged people who need Medicare to sacrifice more by having less medical care, or we can ask the ultrarich to sacrifice more, by being a little bit less ultrarich."

Biden's proposal would keep Medicare solvent for at least the next 25 years, according to estimates by the Medicare Office of the Chief Actuary. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., the Minority Leader, has dismissed the proposal and promised it will not advance in Congress. Critics said raising taxes would hurt the economy, which depends on consumer activity. They argued people would spend less if their earnings drop.

Pearl agreed the economy depends on consumer spending, and stressed working Americans who spend most of what they bring home should be allowed to keep more of their money.

"The very rich people are not going to spend more money; they'll just become a little bit richer," Pearl contended. "Somebody like me, if my tax rates are cut, I'm not going to live any differently. I'll just see the balances in my portfolio be a little bit higher than they would otherwise."

More than 65 million people in Colorado and across the U.S. depend on Medicare coverage, but the fund's trustees warn cuts to benefits will be necessary by 2028 without increased revenues. Pearl noted the nation's economy was strong under the Republican Eisenhower administration, when the wealthiest Americans paid tax rates up to 90% on their second, third and fourth millions.

"And there's no reason why people who make a lot of money now should be paying -- not the same tax rate as people who work for a living -- but actually lower tax rates than people that work," Pearl emphasized. "We need to change the system."


get more stories like this via email

In 2020, 35% of Idaho mothers had Medicaid at the time of their child's birth. (WavebreakMediaMicro/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

With concerning trends emerging for pregnant and postpartum women, frustration is growing that Idaho lawmakers could end the session without …


Social Issues

A new study from the University of New Hampshire found New England's LGBTQ+ residents experience higher rates of food insufficiency, the measure of …

Social Issues

A large percentage of Missourians who could to have their criminal records "expunged" have not done so, despite the effects expungement -- referred …


Businesses would have to pay up to $1,000 if they delay releasing their employees' personnel files longer than four weeks. (JRB/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

A person's work personnel file can be important to review, but some Washingtonians are finding them hard to obtain. A bill in Olympia would ensure …

Environment

The U.S. Farm Bill is up for reauthorization, and Congress faces calls to avoid any delays so certain programs can keep helping farmers and consumers …

Smoking prevention groups said because there are thousands of flavored tobacco products on the market, teens are gravitating toward them and picking up health risks along the way. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Youth advocates continue to sound the alarm over the impact flavored tobacco products have on teenagers, and hope Minnesota lawmakers take another …

Environment

As wildfire seasons in Colorado and across the American West become longer, less predictable and increasingly destructive, a new report aims to …

Environment

New research shows the demand for native seed supply across the Western United States, including Nevada, has increased, but the supply simply is not …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021