One of John McCain’s central challenges is to convince voters that Barack Obama’s tax sights are set not just on the rich, but on the vast bulk of American taxpayers. Steve Moore probes what Obama considers to be “rich” (Hillary Clinton had some thoughts on this too) and then observes:
One problem for Senator Obama and his class-warfare crowd is that repealing the Bush tax cuts for those with earnings of more than $250,000 would raise only about $40 billion a year, according to Cato Institute economist Alan Reynolds. That would leave President Obama with a $360 billion shortfall to meet his other proposals. Either those nurses and policemen are going to have to be defined as “rich” by Team Obama, or the Democrats’ pledge of balancing the budget in five years is a fantasy. Add the fact that his various spending proposals will certainly prove more costly than projected. It sounds like not just the top 2% but most of the bottom 98% had better get ready for higher taxes under an Obama administration.
Well I suppose Obama can stick to his $250,000 figure and raise the rest of the revenue on the backs of corporate America and from taxes capital gains, but even he has recognized the looming recession might make that untenable. Or, he can just give up the pretense that he is fiscally responsible and spend without the revenues to pay for it. But then again, he just might raise taxes on lots and lots of people.
One sure way to probe Obama’s intentions is to look at how he has voted. If he had no problem raising the marginal tax rate on taxpayers making $31,850 that tells you there are many, many rich people in Obama’s view. It seems that McCain might benefit from some of those Ross Perot charts to explain all this to voters when and if he ever gets Obama into a town hall meeting.