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Issues & Insights

Who’s Going To Pay For Elizabeth Warren’s $43 Trillion Agenda?

I&I Editorial

Elizabeth Warren has been taking heat lately for her refusal to state the obvious — that paying for her $34 trillion (and rising) Medicare for All plan would require a huge tax hike on the middle class. Americans for Tax Reform has helpfully gathered up 17 video clips of the Massachusetts senator dodging the question.

It’s obvious why Warren doesn’t want to utter the words “middle-class tax hike.” She’s smart enough to know Republicans would play that quote on an endless loop in every battleground state up until Election Day.

But by focusing on Medicare for All, Warren’s critics are letting her off too easy. That’s because Medicare for All isn’t the only massive new government program she would impose on the country.

Here’s a rundown of what she’s listed … so far … and the 10-year costs:

Green New Deal: $4 trillion “in green research, manufacturing, and exporting,” emission-free buildings, electricity, and so on.

Social Security expansion: Warren wants to dramatically expand benefits, which will cost taxpayers at least $1.8 trillion. She claims it’s all paid for by imposing a 14.8% tax on incomes above $250,000. But that income threshold isn’t indexed, so the hike will eventually bite the middle class.

Free college and debt forgiveness: $1.25 trillion.

Universal Child Care and Early Learning plan: $690 billion.

Housing: $500 billion to “build, preserve, and rehab units that will be affordable to lower-income families.”

Opioid crisis: $100 billion in additional spending.

Election “security”: $20 billion.

Broadband: $85 billion federal grant program “to massively expand broadband access across the country” and $2.5 billion “to help states develop digital equity plans and launch digital inclusion project.”

Job training: $20 billion on apprenticeships and training programs “for people across rural America.”

Then there are the various other billion-here-billion-there programs, such as the $7 billion fund “to close the gap in startup capital for entrepreneurs of color,” relief for Puerto Rico’s $120 billion in debt and pension obligations, and so on.

Add it all together and it comes out to roughly $42.5 trillion over a decade. In other words, Warren plans to nearly double the size of the federal government.

If Warren were to take every penny from everyone making more than $200,000, she wouldn’t have enough money to pay for all these programs, much less tackle annual deficits that will be topping $1 trillion. She could double everyone’s income taxes as well as corporate taxes and not have enough to cover just Medicare for All’s costs.

The wealth tax she’s depending on is an absolute abomination that would — if there’s any hope left for this country — be found wildly unconstitutional, and if not, would crash the economy.

And none of this includes the vast amount of new, hidden taxes her plans would impose on middle-class families. Most notably, her “clean energy” plan — which would ban fracking, phase out nuclear power, and force the country to 100% renewable energy in a matter of years — would cause utility bills to skyrocket. Her plan to force electric cars on the market would force sticker prices through the roof.

Warren would have to raise middle-class taxes. Massively. And not just to pay for Medicare for All. She won’t say it. Reporters won’t pressure her to, or hold her accountable for her attempt to deceive the public. But there is no escaping it.

— Written by John Merline


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17 comments

  • There won’t be enough money to pay for it, plain and simple. Does this moron realize how hospitals and doctors stay in business? It is because of private insurance which she wants to eliminate. Medicare/Medicade does not pay enough on claims to keep hospitals and doctors in business. Do away with private insurance and put millions out of work. Put everyone on Medicare and watch the healthcare industry and the U.S. economy tank right into the dumpster creating conditions worse than the Great Depression of the 1930’s. Liawatha Warren is as dumb as they come.

  • If she becomes the putative candidate, it will be interesting to see which among these many proposals survives the move to the center. One of her biggest problems will be keeping the “all we are saying is give socialism a chance” crowd behind her as she’s forced to abandon much of what they want.

  • The author left out an enormous additional expense: The opportunity cost of banning all fracking and new oil drilling in the US “on day one.” Warren and her ilk do no care if they plunge the Us into financial, security, and economic ruin, because OPM (“Other People’s Money”) is footing the bill…

  • I love how Warren thinks wealthy people will stay the course if they enact massive new taxes on incomes over $250,000. My wife and I already moved from California largely because of high state income taxes and at age 54, would immediately retire(to Florida for 183 days a year) and move most of our income to tax friendly investments such as muni bonds. We would go from paying seven figures in income tax to less than $100k.

  • Another problem that needs to be played until people get it through their heads is the job losses.

    She has promised to throw a million people out of work directly, but indirectly, her plans would cost tens of millions of jobs. Autoworkers will be laid off because people won’t be able to afford to buy cars. Hotel and airline employees will be laid off because businesses will cut back on travel and people won’t be able to afford to take vacations. Restaurant employees will be laid off because people won’t be able to go out to eat. Movie production employees will be laid off because no one has money to invest to finance them. Construction workers will be laid off because no one could afford to buy houses and businesses will be closing, not opening.

    Everyone who has a 401k, a pension, a home, a business, or wage income will see losses. Markets will crash.

    Local governments and school districts will see their tax revenue drop too as home and commercial real estate values plummet.

    The mean value theorem of calculus states that a curve intersects a line at two points, that there is a maximum or minimum between those two points. If tax rates are zero, then tax revenue (rate x base) is zero. If tax rates are 100%, then tax revenue (because no one is going to work as a slave) is zero. The maximum is applicable here. Warren’s tax increases will be well past the maximum, meaning after equilibrium, tax revenue will go down. Keep in mind that federal tax revenue went UP after the Republican tax cuts.

    Why are so many people in this country willing to commit economic suicide?

    • The president does not establish new entitlement programs either. But with a majority in the House and Senate, Democrats can do whatever they like, even confiscate guns, businesses, homes, and farms, and restrict the practice of religion and speech.

      When the SC strikes the laws down, they will simply add more justices to the court who will ignore the Constitution.

      Increasing taxes the way Warren wants will not raise anywhere near the kind of revenue she needs for her redistribution plans. The tax base will shrink enormously. The only way she can do it is to outright confiscate property. That is easier than it sounds, because people will find it hard to come up with the cash needed to pay the taxes she imposes.

  • The best place to watch a Warren presidency is from some other country while retiring early and collecting a social security check. I’d thought ecuador, but there’s some government instability there now.

  • Who do you think? She can blab all she wants to about taxing the wealthy – also known as the donor class but we all know that’s not how it works. She can’t tax the poor because they’re poor. Who does that leave??

  • The people who will pay for Warren’s proposals primarily vote for Republicans. This is by design.

  • Senator Warren lacks not only the foresite to know that 45 + Trillion $ Folley will hand Trump 4 more years. She is so narcissistic and disengenous that she will push the moderate dem’s into not voting at all.
    Should she debates Trump, he will do to her exactly what he did to Hilory and worse. He will have NO issues in insulting and belittling her to tears.

    Her “Plans” aren’t worth even talking about, due to they are a HUGE pipe dream !

  • Well, if college kids are going to get debt forgiveness for current loan balances, how about those that actually paid off their debts? They should get a kick-back. And if they get a kick-back, then I think that those who didn’t attend college because of the unaffordability of it should get paid as well. If they knew that their debt would have been forgiven, or if college would be free, I’m sure they would have attended. So in fairness, everyone should get a deposit of the average amount of debt forgiveness.

  • Warren has received the endorsement of the Working families party, the voice of Democratic Socialism in America. Voters will be able to vote for her either on the Democratic line or the Socialist line.
    In 2016 this party endorsed Bernie. The ladies who run the party ( ie. took it over and now control it) determined they want a female so they picked Warren since she is 100% with Bernie and his frankly Socialist agenda and a lady. They realize that Bernie can’t win as an open Socialist but Warren can as long as she hides her true affiliation.

    This needs to be publicized so that Americans realize that she is a Socialist who calls herself a capitalist.

    You can’t make this stuff up.

  • At first glance the question in the heading may seem relevant, but it isn’t.

    It is much more important to know how, should she gain the presidency, she will govern when, inevitably, all her proposals will turn out not be implementable.

    It’s not important to know what utopia looks like, what’s important is to know what utopia looks like three years in.

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