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Elizabeth Warren wants a yearly wealth tax on America's hyper-rich, report says

Her proposal would also include mechanisms to thwart tax dodgers

by Rex Santus
Jan 24 2019, 8:49pm

Sen. Elizabeth Warren will propose a wealth tax on America’s richest as part of her 2020 campaign agenda, economists working on her proposal told the Washington Post.

People worth more than $50 million can expect a 2 percent tax on their wealth, according to left-wing economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman, who say they are advising Warren on the proposal as part of her 2020 presidential bid. Billionaires will be subject to a 3 percent tax. About $2.75 trillion would be raised from the tax over 10 years from just 0.1 percent of U.S. households, Saez told the Post.

The proposal would also include new mechanisms to combat attempts by America’s wealthiest to dodge taxes, including a mandatory yearly audit on certain people whose wealth could be taxed, and a tax penalty for wealthy people who renounce U.S. citizenship, according to the report.

Warren’s office did not immediately respond to VICE News’ request for comment.

Warren, 69, is entering an increasingly crowded field of prospective Democratic candidates for president in the approaching primaries. She, along with Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, is among the most progressive-leaning of those likely to run. Warren’s plan for a wealth tax proposal may push other 2020 contenders to adopt more radical policies to be viable candidates. That kind of shift has happened already with other issues: In 2016, Hillary Clinton did not endorse Medicare for All or a $15 minimum wage, but every Democratic who's announced a 2020 bid so far has endorsed Medicare for All.

Warren is one of President Donald Trump’s most prominent adversaries, and he repeatedly uses racist jokes to target her over her claim to some Native American ancestry. The Massachusetts senator and former Harvard law professor made a name for herself in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis by becoming a hard-line antagonist of Wall Street and big banks.

Cover: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass, speaks during an organizing event at Curate event space in Des Moines, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Her Iowa debut, beginning Friday evening and continuing across the state Saturday, offered the first glimpse of what she may look like as a 2020 candidate. (AP Photo/Matthew Putney)