President Biden on Wednesday pitched his plan to hike taxes on the wealthy and corporations, saying “trickle-down economics has never worked.”
“It’s time to grow the economy from the bottom and the middle out,” the president said during his first address to a joint session of Congress.
Biden has proposed paying for his $2.25 trillion infrastructure plan through tax increases on corporations, and his new $1.8 trillion plan focuses on helping families through tax hikes on high-income individuals.
Business groups and Republican lawmakers have pushed back on the tax increases, arguing they would hurt the economy. Some Democrats have also raised concerns, with Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) saying he would prefer to raise the corporate tax rate from 21 percent to 25 percent rather than the 28 percent rate Biden has proposed.
During Wednesday's speech, Biden reiterated his pledge to not raise taxes on those making under $400,000 per year. He said that he doesn’t want to punish anyone and argued that increasing taxes on the wealthy and corporations was a matter of fairness.
“It’s time for corporate America and the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans to just begin to pay their fair share,” Biden said. “Just their fair share.”
The president referenced a recent report from the left-leaning Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy that found that 55 large corporations paid zero in federal income taxes last year.
“We’re going to reform corporate taxes so they pay their fair share and help pay for the public investments their businesses will benefit from as well,” he said. “And we’re going to reward work, not just wealth.”