President Joe Biden wants to spend more to “fight Russian aggression” on Ukraine and crime in the United States. (Photo: Getty Images)
Washington — Make “billionaires pay their fair share”: Joe Biden’s 2023 budget proposal contains a new proposal to tax the wealthiest Americans. At the same time, the president wants to spend more on “fighting Russian aggression” on Ukraine and crime in the United States.
This minimum tax on the rich “would only apply to the richest 0.01% of households – those with more than 100 million US dollars – and more than half of the revenue would come from billionaires alone”, specified the White House in a statement.
“This would ensure that in any given year they pay at least 20% of their total income in income tax,” she added.
A tax on the income of billionaires has long been called for by the left wing of the Democratic Party to fight against inequality.
A similar proposal was even considered last year as part of the negotiations for the “Build Back Better” plan, a vast social and environmental spending bill.
But the Biden administration gave up on it in October to try to salvage its plan, which ultimately stalled due to divisions among Democrats in Congress.
The 2023 budget also plans to raise the corporate tax rate to 28%, reversing legislation passed under Donald Trump in 2017, which lowered it to 21%.
“While (big business) profits have skyrocketed, their investments in our economy have not: the tax breaks have not affected workers or consumers,” the White House said. while noting that, at 28%, the new rate would remain historically low.
Washington recalls having also supported an agreement negotiated within the framework of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which would establish a minimum tax of 15% on companies worldwide.
The administration points out that the budget proposal “contains additional measures to ensure that multinational corporations operating in the United States cannot use tax havens to reduce the global minimum tax.”
At the same time, the US budget proposal includes an allocation of US$6.9 billion for the European Deterrence Initiative, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and “countering Russian aggression as well as an additional billion for Ukraine.
Crime and firearms
If the budget is adopted by Congress, these funds would be added to other aid already released to kyiv.
The objective of this new aid is to “improve the capabilities and preparedness of American forces, NATO allies and regional partners in the face of Russian aggression”, explained the White House.
The 2023 budget proposal, which covers the period from October 1 to September 30, details the Biden administration’s spending priorities for the coming year.
It is subject to amendments to be approved by Congress, where Democratic lawmakers control both chambers, but by narrow majorities and are divided on a number of issues.
A sharp increase in defense spending is therefore likely to clash with the left wing of the party.
Domestically, the plan includes US$3.2 billion to put more police officers in the field and $30 billion for fighting crime.
The Biden administration also wants to provide more resources to fight gun violence with an allocation of US$1.7 billion.
The Biden administration has also budgeted US$1.4 billion for the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA).
“This investment restores the historic role of the United States as the largest donor to the World Bank in supporting the development of low- and middle-income countries,” said the White House.
She notes that contributing to global stability, mitigating climate and health risks is beneficial for the United States and Americans.