For Immediate Release: May 23, 2012

Minority Leader Pelosi’s “Middle Class” Tax Plan Benefits Millionaires, According to New Citizens for Tax Justice Estimate

Washington, DC – In seeking an immediate vote in the House of Representatives to extend tax cuts on incomes up to $1 million, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is actually proposing a windfall for millionaires, according to a preliminary analysis from Citizens for Tax Justice. Pelosi’s proposal to extend the Bush income tax cuts for taxpayers’ first $1 million of income is a departure from President Obama’s proposal to extend the tax cuts for the first $250,000 that a married couple makes and the first $200,000 a single person makes.

“This town may never agree on who is middle-class, but surely we can agree it doesn’t include anyone who makes over a million dollars a year,” said Robert McIntyre, director of Citizens for Tax Justice.

Pelosi’s proposal would save 43 percent less revenue than Obama’s plan.
CTJ’s preliminary estimates show that Obama’s proposal to extend the Bush tax cuts for the first $250,000 or $200,000 of income a taxpayer makes would save between $60 billion and $70 billion in 2013 compared to the GOP proposal to extend all the tax cuts, depending on economic conditions. Leader Pelosi’s proposal to extend the Bush tax cuts for the first $1 million of income would save 43 percent less revenue than Obama’s proposal.

■ 50 percent of the additional tax cuts proposed by Pelosi would go to millionaires.
The additional tax cut that would result from Pelosi’s plan compared to Obama’s plan (the additional tax cut resulting from extending the Bush tax provisions for taxpayers’ first $1 million of income instead of “just” their first $250,000 or $200,000 of income) would not be targeted towards the “middle class.” In fact, 50 percent of this additional tax cut would go to taxpayers with adjusted gross income (AGI) in excess of $1 million.

This would result because under Pelosi’s proposal, a married couple making $3 million a year, for example, would continue to pay the lower tax rates (enacted under President Bush) on $1 million of their income. Under Obama’s proposal, a married couple making $3 million a year would continue to pay the lower tax rates on just $250,000 of their income.

Taxpayers with incomes exceeding $1 million would therefore receive substantially larger tax cuts under Pelosi’s proposal than they would under Obama’s proposal.

Also see our fact sheet about these figures.

Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), founded in 1979, is a 501 (c)(4) public interest research and advocacy organization focusing on federal, state and local tax policies and their impact upon our nation (www.ctj.org).

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