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Billionaires to Trump and other 2020 candidates: Please tax us

Key Points
  • Nineteen billionaires and ultra millionaires including George Soros, Abigail Disney and members of the Pritzker family release a bipartisan letter asking the 2020 presidential candidates to support a tax on the American families with the largest fortunes.
  • "The next dollar of new tax revenue should come from the most financially fortunate, not from middle-income and lower-income Americans," they say.
  • A wealth tax is a powerful tool for solving the current climate crisis, another issue that has garnered a lot of attention in the 2020 race, the letter says.
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Some of America's billionaires have a message for the next president of the United States: Tax us.

Nineteen billionaires and ultra millionaires including George Soros, Abigail Disney, Chris Hughes and members of the Pritzker family released a bipartisan letter on Monday asking the 2020 presidential candidates to support a tax on the American families with the largest fortunes.

"The next dollar of new tax revenue should come from the most financially fortunate, not from middle-income and lower-income Americans," the letter said. It was first reported by The New York Times.

A tax on America's wealthiest has been at the forefront of the 2020 election stage. Democratic presidential hopefuls Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Beto O'Rourke and others have come out in support of a tax on the wealthiest Americans.

Earlier this year, Warren proposed a tax of 2% on wealth over $50 million and 3% on wealth over $1 billion. The proposal is estimated to generate nearly $3 trillion in tax revenue in the next decade.

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The billionaire studded letter supports a moderate wealth tax on the top 10% of the richest 1% of Americans.

The letter said a wealth tax is a powerful tool for solving the climate-change crisis, another issue that has garnered much attention in the 2020 race. It also said the tax could grow the economy and help improve public health.

"This revenue could substantially fund the cost of smart investments in our future, like clean energy innovation to mitigate climate change, universal child care, student loan debt relief, infrastructure modernization, tax credits for low-income families, public health solutions, and other vital needs," the letter said.

The letter also calls a wealth tax "fair," "patriotic" and something that "strengthens American freedom and democracy."

In addition to the many billionaires that signed the letter, a CNBC survey this month found that most millionaires support a tax on wealth above $50 million. Fully 60% of millionaires support Warren's plan for taxing the wealth of those who have more than $50 million in assets, the survey showed.

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that the letter calls for a wealth tax on the top 10% of the richest 1% of Americans. An earlier version misstated that percentage.