When Trump was running for president, a majority of his supporters were enticed by his promises of boosting the economy, protecting existing jobs and creating new ones. Those that felt like they were left behind in all the changes that have taken place in the last decade or so, felt hope in Trump’s words and elected a man who would get them their due.
Well, if Trump’s estate tax proposals are any indication of his plans, then they seem to be to make the rich richer. While Trump’s treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, has proclaimed that there will not be any “absolute cuts” in taxes for the wealthy, the new estate tax significantly reduces their tax contribution.
The proposed tax changes
Trump’s changes to the estate tax mean that the upper 1% will have to pay little to nothing in taxes and continue their wealthy legacies. The estate tax is paid by households valued at over $11 million. In 2016, 99.8% of the population did not qualify for the tax. However, the 0.2% of multi-millionaires and billionaires are the focus of this tax and they are well represented in Trump’s cabinet.
The net worth of the current cabinet is $13 billion+, a number that is well above the cabinets of the past. The nation’s first billionaire to become president has added 2 billionaires and at least 10 multi-millionaires to his cabinet. It is clear to see that a majority of the cabinet represents the upper 1% of society.
Mnuchin, for example, has a net worth of $620 million. It is estimated that in 2016, his estate tax came up to $3.3 million. Without the estate tax, Mnuchin pays no tax and is free to pass on his wealth to his heirs. If the tax is removed, his children stand to make an extra $160 million in inherited estates.
Making the poor pay for the rich?
With the estate tax abolished, the government will have to increase taxes in order to generate money for national parks, infrastructure, defense, the national debt and if pertinent, then Donald Trump’s “Wall”. There is no scientific source to support the fact that abolishing the estate tax will create jobs or boost the economy in any way.
While the average citizen has no say in the amount of money they receive, the rich have lawyers and accountants helping them avoid taxes. If Trump’s proposed changes are made, the rich will get to immense wealth and grow it, while the poor shoulder the burden for their greed.