The Dual Nature of the Buffett Rule

In the next few weeks, we can expect Democrats to start bringing up a new tax increase called the Buffett Rule. The Buffett Rule has nothing to do with all-you-can-eat taxes, but is actually named after Warren Buffett. Buffett, the richest man in Omaha, Nebraska, once commented that he has a lower tax rate than his secretary, who earns considerably less than him. Thus, the Buffett Rule will raise minimum tax rates on millionaires and two millionaires to 30%.

The money raised from this tax would go towards reducing the deficit, but don’t let that fool you. The Dems are using it to pound Republicans. Most American’s are fine with raising taxes on the rich and Democrats know that. If Republicans stay true to form and reflexively shout “NO!” at anything with the word tax in it, Democrats end up on top. Plus, stirring up some extra hate for the rich can’t hurt considering Mitt Romney is obscenely wealthy.

The polling suggests that a majority of Americans are for this tax, but I can imagine a scenario in which this strategy backfires on the Democrats. 30% seems like a lot to most people. Plus, a tax increase is always a tax increase. Still though, it will be hard for Republicans to defend voting against the Buffett Rule, especially when it plays into the stereotype that they are overly protective of the rich.