Why We Have Tax Day
People who do well in America ought to do well by America, so everyone has a fair shot.
Connect: America is the greatest country on earth -- we need everyone pitching in to keep it that way.
Define: Paying taxes isn't fun, but they are our investment in America's future -- keeping our neighborhoods safe, maintaining our roads and bridges, and educating our kids.
Connect the dots: Businesses depend on our roads to ship their goods and need educated workers to hire. Americans who keep our country running are customers with money in their pockets -- and that means more jobs.
Contrast: Working families pay their taxes, but thousands of millionaires and big corporations that benefit the most from how our taxes are invested in America will give back nothing at all.
Discredit: When your family needs money to repair the roof, you stop handing out gifts to your millionaire uncle instead of raiding your child's college savings.
Expose: Republican politicians trying to let the 1% pay even less see things differently. They think those who benefit the most should pay the least and need tax loopholes regular workers can't get.
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ATTACKS AND RESPONSES
ATTACK: "Raising taxes on millionaires won't create jobs."
- When President Clinton told millionaires and big corporations to pay their fair share, we got millions of new jobs and strong economic growth.
- We should be putting money in the pockets of real job creators: the middle class whose spending keeps our businesses thriving and hiring. But Republicans would rather take from working families to give more to millionaires and big corporations already sitting on trillions of cash.
- When people who do well in America do well by America, we can help pay down our debt and put Americans back to work -- and that means more customers with money in their pockets.
- Everyone paying their fair share means America can invest in the things that keep our businesses thriving -- maintaining the roads they use, keeping their stores safe, and educating the workers they hire.
ATTACK: "Raising taxes isn't the answer to our debt crisis."
- The best way to handle our debt and get our economy going is to put Americans back to work. It's simple math: more tax giveaways for the 1% that don't create jobs mean less investments in the things that do.
- If they were serious about deficits, they wouldn't have fought so hard for the Bush tax cuts and two unfunded wars that led to the record deficits we're dealing with today - and they'd get rid of deficit-busting tax giveaways for millionaires right now.
- We tried it their way with "trickle down" economics and already know what we've got to show for it: massive deficits and a shrinking middle class. We can't go back to what doesn't work.
ATTACK: "Democrats are waging class warfare."
- As Warren Buffett tells it, the only class warfare in America is being waged by his class -- and they're winning.
- In America, we celebrate success and want everyone who plays by the rules to do well. And when people do well in America, they should do well by America so everyone has a fair shot.
- Our economy works best when everyone plays by the same rules, everyone pays their fair share, and everyone gets a fair shot.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
- In the 1950s and 1960s, when the highest marginal tax rates ranged from 70 to 92%, America built the interstate highway system, put a man on the moon, made our education system the envy of the world -- and had a thriving middle class and an economy that was unparalleled in the world.
- In the 1990s, when President Clinton told millionaires and big corporations to pay their fair share, we got millions of new jobs and strong economic growth.
- We tried "trickle down" tax giveaways for the richest few and they failed: The Bush tax cuts exploded the deficit while failing to create jobs.
- The average tax rate paid by the richest of the richest few -- the wealthiest 0.1% -- is at nearly the lowest rate in over 50 years.
- Tax rates in America overall are at historic lows and our government hasn't collected this little in taxes as a share of our economy since World War II. The United States ranks almost last among modern nations in the amount raised from taxpayers as a share of our national economy.
- Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Mike Bloomberg, and hundreds of "patriotic millionaires" say the wealthiest Americans like them should do what's right and pay higher taxes.
- Poll after poll after poll shows that most Americans support proposals like the Buffett Rule to have millionaires and wealthiest few pay higher taxes. More than two-thirds of Americans also think the federal tax system benefits the rich and is unfair to ordinary workers.
We develop messaging by aggregating, analyzing and distilling polling, tested messaging, and expert recommendations, and monitoring the media to identify what is and isn't working. See here for some of the experts and organizations we draw on.
Posted in - Taxes - Economy - Jobs