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Obama Leadership Essential to Winning New Revenue

Obama Leadership Essential to Winning New Revenue

REPORT: Unnecessary Austerity: Identifies $400 billion in Revenue from Reversing Tax Cuts to Wealthy and Tax Dodging Corporations

"The President's statement today was a welcome step in breaking the silence about revenue in the current budget and deficit debate," said Chuck Collins, co-author of a new report, Unnecessary Austerity. "Before we face another round of budget cuts that undermine the American Dream, U.S. millionaires and corporations like General Electric should pay their fair share."

"Unnecessary Austerity," a new Institute for Policy Studies report examines how Congress could raise more than $4 trillion in revenue over the next decade by reversing years of tax giveaways to the richest Americans and largest corporations.

"When President Obama was born in 1961, families with more than a million dollars of annual income paid 48% of their income in federal income taxes," said Scott Klinger, report co-author. "This year, they will pay just 23%. We need the president to stand tall."

The report examines massive shifts in the tax code since 1961. For example, if corporations and households amassing $1 million or more in income each year paid taxes at the same rates as they did in 1961, the Treasury would collect an additional $716 billion a year - $7 trillion over a decade.

The report prescribes eight new potential revenue sources. Taken together, they would boost revenue by $4 trillion over the next decade. These include:

* Closing overseas tax havens ($90-100 billion)
* Adding new tax brackets for households with more than $1 million ($60-80 billion) in annual income
* Instituting a modest financial transaction tax ($150 billion)

America's increasingly concentrated income and wealth, coupled with historically low effective tax rates on the richest households, are fueling the deficit, according to this new report.

For example, if U.S. corporations were taxed at the same effective rate that they paid in 1961, the additional tax revenue would total $485 billion.

Institute for Policy Studies ( is a community of public scholars and organizers linking peace, justice, and the environment in the U.S. and globally.


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