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Billionaire Tom Steyer has a message for Trump: Raise my taxes

  • Billionaire philanthropist and investor Tom Steyer wants Congress to raise his taxes, not cut them, he told CNBC.
  • "What we've seen is that the upper-income people in the United States have done disproportionately well at the expense of working families for 35 years," Steyer said.

Billionaire philanthropist and investor Tom Steyer has a message for President Donald Trump and Congress: raise my taxes.

Instead, the current Republican plan is a tax cut for the rich, the president and founder of the nonprofit NextGen America told CNBC on Thursday.

"What we've seen is that the upper-income people in the United States have done disproportionately well at the expense of working families for 35 years," Steyer said in an interview with "Power Lunch."

"We need to make sure that we're not in a society that is unbalanced and unfair and where the richest Americans are taking advantage of everybody else."

President Donald Trump and his administration have billed the tax overhaul as a break for low-income and middle-income households. Last month, National Economic Council director Gary Cohn told ABC's "Good Morning America" program that "Wealthy Americans are not getting a tax cut."

However, a recent analysis by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center found that half of the tax benefits in the plan's first year would go to the top 1 percent of earners, based on what's been released so far.

In a recent op-ed in the Los Angeles Times titled "I'm a billionaire. Please raise my taxes," Steyer argued that "tax cuts for the rich defund the critical public programs on which American families depend."

That includes things like education and job training, he told CNBC.

"We have stopped investing in the American people. The American people know it," he told "Power Lunch."

"What makes a successful country is when you invest in the people of the country, whether it's education, health care, job training and you rebuild a clean America to provide the kind of infrastructure that will be sustainable and let us grow," he added.

Steyer, who is a big donor to Democratic candidates, is also reportedly demanding that liberal lawmakers and candidates support removing Trump from office.

According to The New York Times, he wrote a letter to his party that cited a range of acts that justify impeachment. The paper also reported Steyer is considering a run for Senate, perhaps against fellow Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California.

— CNBC's Christina Wilkie contributed to this report.