On the day that Americans faced the annual deadline to file their tax returns, presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker unveiled a plan that he said would cut taxes for some 150 million people.
The New Jersey Democrat on Monday proposed what he's called the Rise Credit, which would nearly double the number of people eligible to receive the benefits of the existing Earned Income Tax Credit.
“Creating a fairer, more just tax code begins with putting money in the pockets of Americans who are struggling to get ahead,” the senator emphasized in a statement.
Booker’s plan would raise the cap for eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit from a maximum of $54,000 to $90,000 for married couples, which his campaign said would allow more working and middle-class families to enjoy the benefit.
The campaign added that qualifying workers without children at home would receive the maximum individual credit of $4,000, nearly eight times what they currently receive from the tax credit.
The campaign – touting his plan as “the most dramatic expansion of the tax credit - spotlighted that the non-partisan Tax Policy Center estimated the broadening of the tax credit benefit would affect 154 million people and touted that Booker’s plan would lift some 15 million people out of poverty.
Booker said funds to cover the expanded tax credit would come from taxing capital gains income at the same rates as other income.
“Cory would help fund the Rise Credit by ending the preferential tax treatment of capital gains investment income that overwhelmingly favors the wealthiest Americans, because income from selling stocks and other investments should be taxed the same as income from work,” his campaign said.
Booker lamented that “families’ earnings are not keeping up with the cost of living, and many people are living paycheck to paycheck with little to nothing left over to save.”
“But instead of helping hard-working Americans who are struggling to get by, our tax code concentrates benefits to those at the very top. It’s unconscionable that hedge fund managers can pay a lower percentage of their income in taxes than their secretaries. That’s wrong and must change,” he stressed.
Booker was scheduled to highlight his Rise Credit plan at a campaign event later Monday in Sioux City, Iowa, as well as at events in Des Moines, Iowa, and Carroll, Nevada, on Tuesday.