Source: In These Times
Last week, when 60 Minutes aired an interview with newly sworn-in Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the freshman New York congressperson caused an uproar with what, by Washington standards, seemed a rather immodest proposal. Asked whether an expansion of public investment in green technologies would require raising taxes, she cited history.
“You look at our tax rates back in the 60s… [and] on your 10 millionth dollar, sometimes you see tax rates as high as 60 or 70 percent,” Ocasio-Cortez explained. Given that a 70 percent tax on the wealthy would be nearly double the current rate on top earners, CBS’s Anderson Cooper responded with disbelief. “What you are talking about…” he said, “is a radical agenda compared to the way politics is done now.”
Cooper was not the only one to express skepticism. While conservatives were predictably apoplectic, even ranking Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee, responsible for drafting the tax code, were incredulous. Texas Democrat Lloyd Doggett described Ocasio-Cortez’s suggestion as “a little over the top.” New Jersey Democrat Bill Pascrell dismissed it as “comical.”