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Which Is Fairer: ‘Buffett Rule’ or ‘Romney Rule’?

Friday, 13 Apr 2012 | 9:24 PM ET
Mitt Romney - Iowa Caucuses
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Mitt Romney - Iowa Caucuses

A former White House aide backed the “Buffett Rule” plan to make millionaires pay a greater tax rate Friday on “The Kudlow Report.”

“It’s not about class warfare. It’s not about attacking the wealth. It’s about making sure that everybody’s paying their fair share,” said Keith Boykin, who worked for the Clinton administration.

On Thursday, Vice President Joe Biden took aim at what he called the “Romney Rule,” portraying the presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney as proposing a plan that would disproportionately benefit high-earners.

“The Romney rule says, ‘Let’s double down on the tax cuts for the wealthy,’” Biden said, later throwing back Romney’s claim that President Obama was “out of touch.”

“Hey, how many of y’all have a Swiss bank account?” Biden said to applause.

The “Buffett Rule” is named for billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who said that he had paid a lower tax rate than his secretary.

Over the past week, Obama has spoken out in favor of the plan, which would tax people making more than $1 million at a minimum 30 percent tax rate.

Biden Blasts 'Romney Rule'
Debating whether VP Biden is deliberately going after Mitt Romney on his taxes and business success, with Keith Boykin, former Clinton White House aide; Robert Costa, National Review political reporter; and Matt Lewis, Daily Caller senior contributor.

Also, Obama and his wife Michelle Obama released their tax returns, showing that they paid an effective federal tax rate of 20.5 percent on income of $789,674 in 2011.

Their federal tax bill was $162,074 in addition to $31,941 in Illinois state income tax.

Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Dr. Jill Biden also released their adjusted gross income at $379,035, and they paid $87,900 in federal taxes.

Romney, who is worth up to $250 million, paid an effective tax rate of 13.9 percent in 2010.

“It’s really about politics,” said Matt Lewis of the Daily Caller.

“Think about essentially what this says, is: We want to raise taxes on the people who provide jobs and who are entrepreneurs,” he said. “And, by the way, the reason that some of these rich folks pay a lower rate is because they’re invested in capital gains taxes, right? So they’re actually investing. They’re creating businesses. They’re investing all that stuff. Right?

“I feel like Democrats and Joe Biden would rather get revenge and get even with the rich than spur the economy.”

Matt Costa of the National Review said, “They want to make this election about Mitt Romney’s money.”

Which do you think is fairer — The "Buffett Rule," the "Romney Rule" or neither? Take our poll and share your comments in the box below.

Tune in:

"The Kudlow Report" airs weeknights at 7 p.m. ET.

Questions? Comments, send your emails to: lkudlow@kudlow.com

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