When It Comes to Capital Gains, Huntsman Is Talking Nonsense

When It Comes to Capital Gains, Huntsman Is Talking Nonsense

By Joseph J. Thorndike

In his recently unveiled tax plan, GOP presidential candidate Jon Huntsman gets things seriously wrong on the subject of capital gains.

Here's what
Huntsman has to say:

    Capital gains and dividend taxes amount to a double-taxation on individuals who choose to invest. Because dollars invested had to first be earned, they have already been subject to the income tax. Taxing these same dollars again when capital gains are realized serves to deter productive and much-needed investment in our economy.

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So let's just call this Huntsman plan what it really is: a huge, highly confused, poorly defended giveaway to people who earn lots of money from their investments. For people who can live off investment gains, it delivers the pleasure of a tax-free lifestyle.

And just in case you're wondering, these people are super rich. As
Pat Garofalo at Thinkprogress.com notes, "At the moment, the richest 0.1 percent of Americans pay 44 percent of the capital gains tax, and 68.3 percent of the tax is paid by the richest 1 percent. The bottom 95 percent of Americans pay just 10 percent of capitals gains taxes."

So we know who's voting for Huntsman.

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View TaxAnalysts' Joe Thorndike's opinion in its entirety on TAX.com.

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