Billionaire and Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer would owe almost $18 million more in annual taxes under a “millionaire’s surtax” proposed by Democratic lawmakers, according to a report published this week.
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Steyer, who reported almost $1.4 billion in total income between 2009 to 2019, would see his tax obligation jump to 32 percent from 22.1 percent, according to an analysis published by the Americans for Tax Fairness on Monday. That’s still below the top federal income tax rate of 37 percent.
During that same period, Steyer paid roughly $305 million in federal income taxes. Under the law, he would have been required to pay an additional $136 million in additional taxes.
Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., and Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., introduced legislation late last year to create a 10 percentage point surtax on income over $2 million for married couples and $1 million for single filers. According to the Tax Policy Center, the surtax would raise an estimated $635 billion over the next decade. It would essentially raise the top tax bracket on wages to 47 percent.
“The robust effect the Millionaires Surtax would have on the tax liability of one of the nation’s richest men is a good illustration of how effective this simple reform would be in ensuring the super wealthy pay something closer to their fair share,” Frank Clemente, executive director of Americans for Tax Fairness, said in a news release.
Steyer, who founded investment company Farallon Capital Management in 1986 and sold it in 2012, is campaigning heavily on addressing climate change.
Although he’s not directly addressed the millionaires surtax, Steyer has previously proposed imposing a 1 percent tax on anyone worth more than $32 million, a 1.5 percent tax on wealth over $500 million and a 2 percent tax on $1 billion, making it a centerpiece of his economic agenda.
"Tom took the Giving Pledge to give half his money to good causes and supported a wealth tax before he declared his candidacy because he believes those who have done well in this system have a special obligation to give back to our society," Steyer's campaign said in a statement.
According to a national polling average from RealClearPolitics, Steyer is currently in eighth place.