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August 4, 2015

Hillary’s Tax Plan Matters, Not Her Taxes Paid

This just in: The Clintons paid a lot of taxes on a lot of income.

Friday traditionally is the day federal agencies and people trying to avoid wide public disclosures release information they want to keep on the down low. Most people tune out the news over the weekend. So it’s not surprising that Hillary Clinton’s health and financial data, as well as her latest email trove, were released in a classic Friday afternoon news dump.

Clinton released seven years of tax returns, posting her filings from 2007 to 2014 on her campaign website. Since 2007, the Clintons have paid $43 million in federal income taxes and $13.6 million in states taxes while reporting $13.6 million in charitable contributions. What did they earning to make such payments? A total of $140.9 million, with an adjusted gross income of $139.1 million.

And as The Wall Street Journal notes, her “charitable giving” wasn’t exactly charitable: “That’s wonderful, save for the small detail that her charity of choice was her own family. The couple donated all but $200,000 of their gifts since 2007 to the Clinton Family Foundation, which isn’t exactly the Little Sisters of the Poor.”

Since 2009, when Hillary Clinton became secretary of state, the Clintons had an adjusted gross income of $112.5 million through 2014. One might wonder how a meek public servant and the nation’s leading diplomat managed to cash in on more money than most Americans will see in a lifetime. Just during her tenure at State, the Clintons managed to earn $57.5 million, and she clearly aimed to avoid too many questions about that with the late Friday disclosure.

To deflect questions, poor little rich girl Hillary played the class card. “We’ve come a long way from my days going door-to-door for the Children’s Defense Fund and earning $16,450 as a young law professor in Arkansas,” the Democrat front-runner said in a statement, “and we owe it to the opportunities America provides.”

Yes, Hillary, you’ve come along way from being “dead broke.”

Hillary unsuccessfully played this empathy card during one the many re-launches of her pitiful campaign. But this time, she also hit two GOP presidential contenders for favoring tax reform that might benefit high earners — you know, the ones who pay the lion’s share of federal income taxes. “Jeb Bush supports eliminating or dramatically lowering capital gains taxes for wealthy investors with no incentives for long-term holding,” she said, scandalized. And “Marco Rubio’s plan would cut taxes for households making more than $3 million a year by almost $240,000 — more than four times the earnings of a typical family.”

And just think: $240,000 isn’t even a full speech for Hillary.

Clinton’s tax plan is the usual leftist fare: Higher tax rates for the “wealthy,” by which she means people earning less in a year than she makes in 60 minutes. It’s only fair, right? “Families like mine that reap rewards from our economy have a responsibility to pay our fair share,” she said. “And it’s not just the right thing to do — it’s also good for growth.” No, it’s not, but that’s beside the point for her.

If people think the rhetoric of Bill and Hillary Clinton is worth as much as the duo charges, so be it. This is America, after all, and they’re free to live it up. But her “woman of the people” shtick is tiresome and phony, and her economic plan would be disastrous. That’s what matters, not her income or taxes paid.

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