As the 2020 election race begins to heat up some of the biggest talking points and policy debates are now coming into focus after 18 Democrats filed to run for president with the Federal Election Commission.
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Some Democratic candidates have proposed ambitious, multi-billion dollar policies to expand social programs and overhaul the country’s infrastructure, and they hope to fund these by repealing President Trump’s 2017 tax cuts which dropped the corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent.
Here’s a look at some of the policies Democratic candidates say they want to implement if elected and want to pay for by rolling back the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
Kamala Harris: At the end of March, the California senator proposed a plan to dramatically increase public-school teachers’ salaries. Under Harris’s plan, the average teacher in the U.S. would receive a $13,500 pay raise over four years for a hefty price tag of $315 billion in federal funding.
The plan would be paid for, in part, by making unspecified changes to the estate tax (which is levied on assets, like real estate and cash, when a person dies). In the new tax law, however, Republicans raised the estate tax exemption to $11.18 million, allowing all assets valued under that to be passed on without triggering the 40 percent tax.
The Democratic hopeful also released a tax plan last fall that would pay tax credits that match a person’s earnings up to $3,000 (or $6,000 for married couples), according to The Washington Post. Harris has proposed paying for the costly plan by eliminating parts of the tax law and by taxing large financial institutions.
Amy Klobuchar: The Minnesota senator, at the end of March, unveiled a $1 trillion plan to rebuild the country’s infrastructure. The plan would be funded by $650 billion in federal funding, a return to the Obama-era “Build America Bonds”, and a series of corporate tax reforms including raising the tax rate on corporations to 25 percent from the current 21 percent. She also said she would close loopholes that encourage U.S. companies to operate overseas.
Cory Booker: Like Harris and Klobuchar, Booker said he would roll back the tax cuts and use the money to support expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit. According to Mother Jones, a campaign aide for the New Jersey Democrat said reforms to the federal estate and inheritance tax could fund Booker’s plan to provide every newborn in the U.S. with a $1,000 savings account until they turn 18 with more money going toward lower-income families.
Kirsten Gillibrand: While Gillibrand, a New York senator, said she supports making the middle-class tax cuts from the 2017 overhaul permanent, she has said she would repeal the “massive corporate tax cut,” Mother Jones reported. What would she do with the money? Expand the earned income tax credit and the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, which offers a tax break for child care.
Elizabeth Warren: The Massachusetts senator has said she “really wants to see [the corporate tax rate] rolled back.
“The values of the Republican Party that passed those tax cuts are to give $1.5 trillion away to the richest Americans and the biggest corporations, and let everybody else pick up the crumbs,” she told CNBC in July.
She’s pitched an aggressive ultra-millionaire tax that she said would be used to fund universal childcare, student loan debt relief and down payments on a Green New Deal and Medicare for All.