Chip Somodevilla / Getty ImagesHouse Speaker Nancy Pelosi addresses reporters at a news conference last week in the Capitol. After President Trump signed a $2 trillion bill aimed at relief for Americans in the face of the coronavirus outbreak, Pelosi is planning new legislation using the crisis as cover to restore a huge tax break to the wealthy. (Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images)
To Nancy Pelosi, all politics is local – even in an epidemic of global proportions.
The House speaker, who hails from one of the wealthiest congressional districts in the United States, is pushing to use government efforts to fight the coronavirus outbreak as a weapon to fight for a tax break that would benefit the wealthiest Americans – very much including her neighbors.
Less than a week after President Donald Trump signed a $2 trillion emergency relief measure to help Americans hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak, Pelosi wants a new recovery package to include a restoration of tax deductions for wealthy Americans in high-tax states, according to Fox News.
The state and local tax (SALT) deduction was eliminated by the Republican tax reform of 2017 — the tax reform that helped spur an economy that was roaring before the coronavirus hit.
For Pelosi, the San Francisco liberal who represents a congressional district where the median household income is $113,919, according to the Census Bureau, that would mean getting back a big tax break for her neighbors – and herself.
As Fox reported:
“Pelosi and her husband have a property tax liability of approximately $198,337.62 considering their two homes, a winery and two commercial properties, public records show, indicating that the couple could reap substantial benefits in the event of a full SALT repeal.”
Do you think this Pelosi tax cut for the wealthy will get past the Senate?
Imagine a Democrat reaping “substantial benefits” from government tax policy.
It was almost enough to make social media users think Pelosi’s professed sympathy for the poor had more to do with hypocritically helping herself and her wealthy neighbors than aiding the country’s less fortunate.
The Democrats have hated that part of the Republican tax cut from the get-go.
When the state and local deductions were legal, governments of Democratic-run states like Pelosi’s California and deep-blue New York could tax their wealthy residents without worrying too much because those taxes could just be written off on the federal tax bill.
Once the reform kicked in, the tax bills on wealthy liberals started to bite.
The Democrats who control the House of Representatives under Pelosi malicious reign would like nothing more than to be able to use that power to restore the deduction – so the country’s richest liberals could go back to hiding behind high state taxes to reduce their federal bill. (Liberals love high taxes when everyone else is paying them.)
But with Republicans still firmly in control in the Senate, Pelosi’s push isn’t likely to get much further than her own chamber.
“This is a nonstarter,” a representative for Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, told Fox. “Millionaires don’t need a new tax break as the federal government spends trillions of dollars to fight a pandemic.”
Ah, but Pelosi thinks they do.
Her neighborhood, after all, is listed by the financial news website GoBankingRates as the 24th richest congressional district in the country. Her constituents, her neighbors, could sure use that new tax break.
She could even use it herself.
And for Nancy Pelosi, even in the middle of an epidemic of global proportions, all politics is local.
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