Across the country, the House Republican budget plan — designed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) — has faced the ire of Main Street Americans, who are outraged that it effectively ends Medicare. But the plan also includes steep cuts to discretionary spending that would gut services and investments upon which Main Street depends.
But at the same time, the budget would lower the top marginal tax rate on the wealthiest Americans to a 25 percent, returning the tax rate on the richest to pre-New Deal levels. The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) demonstrates this with the following graph:
While the House Republican budget passed the House of Representatives with the votes of all but four Republicans, it failed to pass in the Senate. But it did receive 40 votes, including the votes of all but four members of the Senate Republican caucus — with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) actually voting against it because it wasn’t conservative enough.
Yet this position is radically out of step with Americans. A New York Times/CBS News poll released last month found that 72 percent of Americans want to raise taxes on Americans who earn more than $250,000 a year — with even 55 percent of self-identified Republicans supporting such a measure. By taking the position that taxes should be dramatically cut on the richest Americans, Republicans aren’t only out of touch with the country as a whole, they aren’t even representative of their own party’s self-proclaimed members.