Donald Trump bashes Democrats' new billionaire tax and suggests he might flee the US, but he'll 'stick it out'

  • Donald Trump bashed Democrats' proposal to tax billionaires to pay for their social spending bill.

  • This comes after House Finance Chair Richard Neal said the proposal is off the table.

  • But his Senate counterpart and author of the proposal Ron Wyden said the tax is not "dead."

Former president Donald Trump assailed the new billionaire tax proposal from Democrats on Wednesday, suggesting he might flee the United States to escape taxation. But he says he'll be sticking around.

"I just wonder, will I be allowed to run for president again if I move to another country?" he said in a statement. "No, I guess I'll just stick it out, but most others won't!"

Trump was referring to the new billionaire tax proposal that's already on life-support in the Senate only hours after it was introduced by Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon. It would levy a 23.8% capital gains tax rate on assets like stocks and bonds in an effort to compel roughly 700 billionaires to pay annual taxes on their gains, regardless if they sell or not.

Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia imperiled the measure after criticizing it as both punitive to successful people and unworkable. "I don't like the connotation that we're targeting different people," he told reporters, floating a 15% "patriotic tax" without elaborating further.

As Insider previously reported, this proposal would slap people like Tesla CEO Elon Musk with a $10 billion annual bill, which Musk himself spoke out against on Twitter: "Eventually, they run out of other people's money and then they come for you."

An analysis from economist Gabriel Zucman found that the tax could bring in $500 billion, $275 billion of which would come from just the top 10 richest billionaires. If the proposal came to fruition, it would be a "a major structural reform to the tax system" to tax income from wealth like income from wages, according to Frank Clemente, executive director at the left-leaning advocacy group Americans for Tax Fairness.

But just a day after the proposal was brought to the table, House Finance Chair Richard Neal struck it down, telling reporters on Wednesday that it's "very unlikely" the tax will be used to finance Democrats' scaled-down social-spending bill. At the same time, though, Neal's counterpart Wyden was far from throwing in the towel on the proposal he authored.

"I'm not saying that it's dead!" Wyden told Insider, noting that the White House still backs the proposal.

This disagreement is emblematic of the negotiations Democrats are undergoing as they work to develop a framework for their scaled-down bill. Free community college, paid family and medical leave, and an extended five-year child tax credit are already reportedly on the chopping block, and a major Democratic priority to roll back Trump tax cuts were struck down by Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema.


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