Trump would raise taxes on struggling middle class families, so that billionaire real estate developers could get a massive tax cut.

Dylan Matthews has a great new post showing that Trump’s new tax plan would devastate the sort of Americans who have been struggling hardest with the new economy:

Batchelder provides several examples of families that would see their taxes go up under Trump’s plan. The biggest hikes number in the thousands of dollars, and are concentrated among single parents:

  • A single parent with $75,000 in earnings, two children in school, and no child care costs (because the kids are in school) would pay $2,440 more.
  • A single parent with $50,000 in earnings, three children in school, and child care costs of less than $6,000 would pay $1,188 more.
  • A married couple with $50,000 in earnings, two kids in school, and no child care costs would pay $150 more because of the bottom bracket’s increase from 10 to 12 percent.

Batchelder helpfully summarizes this in two tables, one for single parents:

Table: Single parent families facing tax increases under Trump

What will Trump do with this money that he takes from our struggling middle class? Slash income taxes from 40% to 15%, for (non-corporation) billionaire real estate developers like, well . . . like Trump himself.  Here’s Binyamin Appelbaum:

Mr. Trump proposed last year to sharply reduce the corporate rate to 15 percent, from 35 percent, and to apply the same rate to passthrough income. Democrats sharply criticized that proposal as a giveaway to the owners of passthrough businesses, a group that includes many real estate developers like Mr. Trump, because they would not need to pay a second round of taxes on dividends. The Tax Foundation says it would cost the government about $1 trillion over 10 years.

You should read the entire piece, it’s probably the most hilarious news article I’ve read in years.  (And Appelbaum is a deeply serious reporter.)

The Trump people aren’t even pretending that any of this is serious.  They basically admit to the reporters that it’s all a lie. I’m beginning to feel sorry for Larry Kudlow, he has no idea what he’s hitched his wagon to.

If the Clinton campaign were smart (which I increasingly doubt), then between now and election day they do nothing but run commercials of real people, showing how much their taxes would go up under Trump’s plan.  His tax people are so incompetent they don’t even know how to lie properly. They just handed her a juicy issue, on a silver platter.  Now watch her flub it.

This caught my eye:

The easiest short sales I’ve ever had in my life were the stocks and bonds of Donald J. Trump’s companies. … It was like numerous ocean liners hitting many icebergs repeatedly.  —   Jim Chanos, Kynikos Associates

Like his business career, a Trump presidency will be very good for Trump himself, and very bad for the companies country he runs.


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39 Responses to “Trump would raise taxes on struggling middle class families, so that billionaire real estate developers could get a massive tax cut.”

  1. Gravatar of Brett Brett
    26. September 2016 at 19:49

    If only I could go back in time and bet against Trump Everything, especially in the 1980s and 1990s. I’d made a fortune.

  2. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    26. September 2016 at 20:47

    Trump thinks he’s been able to pay zero in taxes because he’s so smart….
    See. its like this… …you’ve been too stupid to not pay taxes….It’s not that the game is rigged for people like trump… it’s that you are dumb.

  3. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    26. September 2016 at 21:03

    There is still gold to be mined from the debate..

    I have not heard anyone make a big deal out of Trump wanting to see an atomic war in the far east…

    “China should solve the problem for us. China should go into North Korea. China is totally powerful as it relates to North Korea.”

  4. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    26. September 2016 at 21:34

    I am encouraged by the article. I appreciate that a monetarist would show this level of concern for the average guy on the street. Thanks, Scott. Seriously.

  5. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    26. September 2016 at 22:39

    Old news by Sumner, a registered Democrat. The Republicans since Reagan have been cutting taxes for the rich. “The average tax level as a percent of GDP from 1960-1980 was identical that of 1980-2000. Taxes were rearranged. Greater payroll taxes, lesser top marginal rates and capital gains.”

    Another silly post by Sumner. I’m waiting for his post on Paul Romer’s observations about the bankruptcy of modern economics: appeals to authority, petty feuds and little else by way of science. Kind of like how Sumner treats his readers?

  6. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    26. September 2016 at 22:54

    Trump admitting that he pays Zero in taxes is admitting that he is a uuuuuuge Welfare Queen..

    No way around it.
    He’s routinely subsidized by our tax dollars…and he never pays in…
    That amounts to Trump getting free stuff from the government…

  7. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    27. September 2016 at 00:19

    So the middle class is struggling now?! Since when? All I heard from my favorite bloggers so far were comments and posts à la “The middle class is doing just fine”. Posts which were mostly correct. Don’t become a flip-flopper now.

  8. Gravatar of Chuck Chuck
    27. September 2016 at 00:48

    So short treasuries then?

  9. Gravatar of Dave Also Dave Also
    27. September 2016 at 02:22

    @Ray Lopez – I recommend you continue to focus on the first sentence of your opening paragraph, because I accidentally read it this time.

  10. Gravatar of Patrick R. Sullivan Patrick R. Sullivan
    27. September 2016 at 04:48

    H.L. Mencken had it right, no one ever went broke underestimating the American people. These two are among the least admirable human beings in the country. As well as the most ignorant.

  11. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    27. September 2016 at 06:16

    Christian, You really are clueless. Do I have to use scare quotes every time?

  12. Gravatar of John Thacker John Thacker
    27. September 2016 at 06:18

    “A married couple with $50,000 in earnings, two kids in school, and no child care costs would pay $150 more because of the bottom bracket’s increase from 10 to 12 percent.”

    Basically this means that married couples with a stay at home parent are penalized in order to benefit two earner couples. A more neutral way to help with children would be a simple refundable child credit, instead of insisting that it only goes to outside child care. Not surprising that Trump and Ivanka, being New York liberals, would think this way.

  13. Gravatar of Student Student
    27. September 2016 at 06:39

    Well that was quite a performance. He would have won if only that bully Lester Holt wasn’t so mean to him or if his microphone wasn’t amplifying his post nasal drip.

    Ah who cares about policy details and meanies… Let’s just take him on his word that he can take on the likes of the Chinese, Iranians, or Russians. Those guys are so much more fair and unbiased.

    He would bring his best words and take on those meanies big league. Just trust him. He’s an honest deal maker and well schooled policy wonk. Next time he will bring better zingers and say those things about bill cheating on Hillary that other people have been mentioning on the shows that he would bring up if his temperament wasn’t so well regulated and deferential.

  14. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    27. September 2016 at 07:42

    Lol, Student, your wit is noted. Trump is such a crybaby, complaining about those mean ads about him. What a child.

    I am no fan of the empire, but, if you make a deal to protect nations, you can’t just walk away or demand money. Our multinationals make big money in those nations. Which is why they need to pay taxes at home.

    Trump is a dangerous character. We need to work with Russia and respect Putin, not idolize Putin. There is a difference.

  15. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    27. September 2016 at 08:15


    Trump would raise taxes on struggling middle class families, so that billionaire real estate developers could get a massive tax cut.

    So you meant this in an ironic way? Okay. My mistake, it’s just “obvious” that you meant it ironic.


    Do I have to use scare quotes every time?

    Yes, I guess you should. Irony is not your strong suit at all. You even know this, we had incidents like this before.

  16. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 08:15

    Patrick….says… “These two are among the least admirable human beings in the country. As well as the most ignorant.”

    Do you really think Hillary is ignorant ? Or is it that she is highly informed and educated …but just disagrees with you ?

    Big differance… Also, two people can have the exact same information set and still disagree… Right ? you know that ?

    Do you think hill’s information set is exceptionally small ?

  17. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 08:19

    Dementia ? Clearly Trump was not prepared for the debate….maybe he’s not capable of preparing for a debate ?
    he’s got two more chances…if he can’t prepare for them either… it’s scary…
    Not joking…

    He’s 70….we deserve to see an independent mental evaluation…

    Symptoms include forgetfulness, limited social skills, and thinking abilities so impaired that it interferes with daily functioning.
    People may experience:
    Cognitive: memory loss, mental decline, confusion in the evening hours, disorientation, inability to speak or understand, making things up, mental confusion, or inability to recognize common things
    Behavioral: irritability, personality changes, restlessness, lack of restraint, or wandering and getting lost
    Mood: anxiety, loneliness, mood swings, or nervousness
    Psychological: depression, hallucination, or paranoia
    Muscular: inability to combine muscle movements or unsteady walking
    Also common: falling or jumbled speech

    Trump’s entire campaign…Trump’s debate performance… They are classic and ample demonstrations of the symptoms of dementia…

    HE’S 70….

  18. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 08:30

    Dementia? … Ever try to have a conversation with some suffering from dementia with a tv in the room ?

    Trump Pauses Washington Post Interview Five Times to Watch TV….

    http://www.mediaite.com/print/trump-pauses-washington-post-interview-five-times-to-watch-tv/

  19. Gravatar of Gary Anderson Gary Anderson
    27. September 2016 at 08:33

    It is one thing to be demented but quite another to be like Trump, a demented ass. He was an ass when he was born and now he is a demented ass.

    But dementia is just one of his horrible attributes. You watch, he thinks Bill is the candidate so he will go after him personally next time.

    What bothers me most is Trump singles out people to criticize, like Cuban and Rosie. That is not what presidential candidates do.

    And he has singled out a disabled journalist. What is dirty guy. He

  20. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 08:41

    The bagdad bobbsey twins haven’t checked in yet..
    I’m sure their resolve is not shaken… They just haven’t gotten their orders yet, i’ll bet.

    Or maybe…they are finally seeing trump as a failure…??? That has to hurt…who doesn’t remember how awful that moment was when you realized that your dad really coun’t beat up all the other dads… I was 11 and I cried…

    So ya gotta feel for them… it’s probably kinda like tonsils … much worse when you miss the immunity supplied by the childhood malady .

    Even Stormfront Thinks Hillary Clinton Won The Debate….AHAHAHAHAhhhhhahahahahhhhhhhhahahaaaaaahahaaa…ahaha…ha…OMG

    http://theconcourse.deadspin.com/even-stormfront-thinks-hillary-clinton-won-the-debate-1787121521

  21. Gravatar of Bababooey Bababooey
    27. September 2016 at 08:57

    You allege that Trump is helping himself by cutting taxes on pass-through income. But did you notice, while gleefully trumpeting Chanos’ boasts, that he shorts Trump’s stocks and bonds? Pass-throughs don’t issue stocks and bonds.

    So what pass-through income are you talking about? Or does TDS supply all the inferences you need, evidence be damned?

    :)

  22. Gravatar of Lawrence D’Anna Lawrence D'Anna
    27. September 2016 at 09:18

    Never-mind that presidents don’t write tax laws, let’s debate who’s totally imaginary tax plan is worse!

  23. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    27. September 2016 at 09:37

    Christian, You said:

    “we had incidents like this before”

    We? Or you?

    Bababooey, Trump gets most of his income from his own businesses as far as I know. But then to know for sure I’d have to see his tax returns. The ones he lied that he was going to release to the public before the election, and then when caught lying, lied again that he could not release them because he was being audited.

    Or at least I think that’s a lie. You know more about tax audits than I do—is it in fact illegal to release tax returns that are currently being audited?

    The NY Times also seems to think that Trump would benefit from the 15% rate on pass throughs. I’m going with that assumption, until someone proves to me that Trump gets all his income from stocks, and not the family firms documented here:

    http://www.investopedia.com/updates/donald-trump-companies/

    I thought Chanos’s comment was amusing, and several Trump enterprises did go through bankruptcy, but I have no idea if Chanos is telling the truth.

    My God! If someone can’t laugh at Trump then what is there left to laugh at? It’s almost like Ray Lopez, or Gary, were running for president. The guy says idiotic things every single day.

  24. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    27. September 2016 at 09:50

    Bababooey, I actually do get why people would vote for Trump over Hillary. He might end up being so clueless that Paul Ryan would run the show. Who knows, maybe he’d do well. And Hillary is terrible, I get all that.

    But man, how can anyone defend Trump? Is there any way a person could be bad, that does not apply to Trump? Intellectually lazy, a bully, a bigot, a liar even by politician standards, a xenophobe, a protectionist, a conspiracy nut, an authoritarian, an admirer of Putin, vindictive, emotionally immature, etc. Plus he’s surrounded by incompetent advisers, so he doesn’t even know enough to know how to get good advice.

    I consider myself to be totally unqualified to be President, and Trump’s even less qualified than I am.

  25. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    27. September 2016 at 10:13

    @Christian List – don’t take Sumner seriously, he’s not meant to be. Nobody in his field takes him seriously, so neither should you. As for ‘struggling middle class’ you are quite right, there’s no struggle at all. The middle class has been shrinking in terms of percent of the population, but that’s not the same as “struggling”. Of course, if the middle class aspires to live like the 1%, then they will struggle to ‘keep up with the Joneses’, but that’s not the same as saying they are struggling.

    Full disclosure: I and my family are in the 1% in net worth, which requires a minimum of $8M. Sumner also might be in this bracket if he had the foresight and wisdom to buy Boston real estate when he was young, but, if he’s your typical college professor, he probably is in the $1-3M net worth range, not bad but nothing great. He cares about the poor though, which is interesting as they no doubt don’t care about him.

  26. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 10:52

    How many food stamp cheats would it take to make one Trump sized welfare queen ?

  27. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 11:00

    “Never-mind that presidents don’t write tax laws, let’s debate who’s totally imaginary tax plan is worse!”

    actually…if you look at history…the presidents have a huge influence on tax policy …even though they don’t get to write it.

    It’s like you are saying presidents really don’t have any influence over legislation because they don’t get to write the actual laws…

    That’s not how it works here… Are You an American ? Because this stuff is obvious to those of us who live here with our eyes open…

  28. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 11:20

    Trumps says the Beauty Queen got fat, and had a bad attitude, so he had to change her attitude. How ?
    Well, not by being positive because…Well you know the Donald…Women: “You have to treat them like shit.”

    Women:”you have to treat them like shit”… is music to the ears the misogynist of the ALT Right.. and yesterday they saw ,once again, that their prefered way of dealing with women, and a view that is the base of much of what they believe, is impotent.

    What we saw yesterday from Trump was the rage of Impotence …

    his followers can’t deal with impotence… Can you feel the anger in the air ?

  29. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    27. September 2016 at 12:46

    “Or at least I think that’s a lie. You know more about tax audits than I do—is it in fact illegal to release tax returns that are currently being audited?”

    -Trump never said it was illegal; he correctly said no serious adviser would advise anyone under audit to release his tax returns.

  30. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 13:00

    now trumps’ people are hinting that his problems in the debate was that he did not treat hillary like shit deeply enough or frequently enough..

    next debate is a town hall setting…

    At the end of last debate trump set himself up as the poor victim of a wicked women… His followers are going to have their strings pulled like manic marionettes. He’ll have them in a frenzy.

    They will want to see Trump put a woman in her place..to giver her the thrashing she deserves for being mean to a man…

    The policy issues clearly don’t matter to trump supporters…( maintaining the illusion that they matter does…who they are fooling is open to question )…. what matters is display.

    and a lot of trump supporters are all about trump because of his misogynist displays… Not to say that all trump’s deplorable displays are about women.. A lot of trump supporters support him for other deplorable displays about other things too…

    He’s running against a women…A guy like him with his uuuuughe ego won’t allow him not to be a misogynist…

  31. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 13:10

    Harding… BS…
    most tax advisors say it shouldn’t matter… Tell Me how would it matter if the public know what’s going on in the adit ?…are you claiming that it would affect the outcome of the audit ?… Thats absurd.

    If your tax advisor is telling you that …get a new one..

    Beside…he doesn’t’ have to release his returns to tell us a lot of what is in them…like his rate…
    He’s going to release them anyway …RIGHT ???

    Trump would never lie about them would he ???…LOL If he told us what was in them he would be obligated to keep his promise and open them up… especially if he won…

    Trump is in a box on his taxes.. it’s a no win for you guys..

  32. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 13:17

    Harding…”trump paying no taxes” is it…

    Noble and smart and proof that he is a grrrrreat businessman ?

    OR….

    Proof that Trump is one of America’s biggest welfare queens ?

    regardless of how you feel how do you think americans feel about it ? (not just “real” americans …but you know..all of us ? )

  33. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 13:32

    Scott…are you really a registered democrat ? Maybe you can work a deal…you release your voter registration card if Trump will release his taxes ?

    😉

  34. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 13:38

    Hey Harding..or anyone if he can’t bring himself to answer a question from a brown guy…

    Is it racist to be against welfare if you only are against welfare for poor people ? (who are heavily brown and black )
    Can you claim to be against welfare and vote for one of the nation’s biggest welfare queens ? Especially when that welfare queen wants to make it easier for him to remain a welfare queen…and will create more uuuuughe welfare queens ?

    why are poor welfare queens something to seeth over and rich white welfare queens something to vote for ??

    It’s seems kinda racist when ya look at it like that…i think.

  35. Gravatar of Student Student
    27. September 2016 at 16:51

    Ray,

    You might be the only wanna be narcissist I have have ever come across. That is remarkable.

  36. Gravatar of Student Student
    27. September 2016 at 16:58

    Easy E,

    He implied it was illegal to trick his dumb base. The fact you think that advice isn’t coming from a campaign manager is dumb.

  37. Gravatar of Bill Ellis Bill Ellis
    27. September 2016 at 18:11

    Ray…project much ??? Just because you don’t care about poor people doesn’t mean they don’t care about you… (you may confuse them not wanting to indulge your every whim regardless of how it affects others with hating you…but it’s not. )

    truth is ray…most people DO care about other people…even wealthy ones.
    Truth is Ray…most people want everyone to have value, worth and dignity…and no one really cares much if some have more…or even much more as long as they have these basic things…

    Don’t believe me ? then you haven’t been looking at human history with your eyes open…

    you’ve got a messed sense of the division of humanity… you see it as a class struggle… when actually it is a left right struggle.

    I’m giving you big insight here…so listen… While it is true without a doubt that class’s exist… they are not necessarily aligned against each other….rather each class has it’s own natural distribution of liberals and conservatives… and the way to true political change is not for one class to defeat an other…as is recommended or at least implied by econ philosophers of all stripes..

    No the key to political power is getting the different classes’like political wings to support each other… the political wing that can achieve alignment across classes will prevail…

    Get it ? In a way I hope you don’t get it.

  38. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    28. September 2016 at 00:52

    @Student – I’m not a ‘wannabe’, I can prove my family is in the 1%, just using Zillow.com and basic math. But I’m not going to engage in a pissing contest with strangers. I live frugally, and realize it’s a bell-shaped curve so somebody is always ahead of you. In this forum, maybe it’s Duda, or some lurker we’ve never heard of. In the USA basically everybody is well-to-do, from what I’ve seen, if they live in big cities and are part of the professional class like Sumner is. And I’m living with and will marry a poor girl half my age from the Philippines, from a different race and background. Her poor family lives in one of the poorest neighborhoods in the Philippines, but I love her anyway. It doesn’t hurt she’s hot and half my age…oops, hope she’s not reading this the wrong way, if somehow she reads this, haha.

    @Bill Ellis – thanks, but possibly I know more about the poor than you, who I would imagine is relying on Norman Rockwell classic American ideals. In the USA, there’s more mobility between ‘classes’ than outside, so what you say is true in the USA but less so outside. See also above. Since this blog is not about me, I’ll not be making any more comments on this point in this thread.

  39. Gravatar of Jill Jill
    30. September 2016 at 14:40

    “But man, how can anyone defend Trump? Is there any way a person could be bad, that does not apply to Trump? Intellectually lazy, a bully, a bigot, a liar even by politician standards, a xenophobe, a protectionist, a conspiracy nut, an authoritarian, an admirer of Putin, vindictive, emotionally immature, etc. Plus he’s surrounded by incompetent advisers, so he doesn’t even know enough to know how to get good advice.”

    People have been propagandized by the TV for decades now to vote on emotion, specifically fear and anger, rather than on issues. Trump recognizes this and takes full advantage.

    How else can you so very easily get people to vote against their best interests, except by stirring people up with fear and anger? Most of the characteristics you listed are ones that scared people desire in their protector and leader. They want a bully who is on their side.

    And as for angry people, Trump hates the people they hate, thus rewarding and justifying their hatred, as if it’s a good thing. It doesn’t get better than that, as far as the angry are concerned.

    Scott Adams is a Trump supporter. Look at his blog at Dilbert.com He will explain what someone with a huuuuge man crush on Trump thinks– I mean feels– about Trump. Adams bends over backwards and ties himself in knots, trying to appear rational in his reasons why he thinks– I mean feels– that Trump is so wonderful. See? Even an educated person can do this.

    Just forget you have a brain, and get carried away with fear and anger. See how it works?

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