Thursday, December 17, 2015

I'll See Your Koch Brothers and Raise You Warren Buffett


Yeah, the dreaded Koch Brothers may be determined to buy the 2016 election for the Republicans... but luckily, Hillary has another absurdly rich guy in her arsenal:
Hillary Clinton on Wednesday picked up the endorsement of the billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who gave his backing to her while calling for increased taxes on the country’s highest wage earners.
Mr. Buffett began his remarks at an event in Omaha with some stark statistics. In 1992, the top 400 wage earners in the United States made an average of $48.6 million each, compared with $335.7 million in 2012, Mr. Buffett said, using the most recent statistics available based on income tax returns.
“This group,” which includes Mr. Buffett, who is worth an estimated $66.7 billion, “had their income increase sevenfold,” he said, adding, however, that “their tax rate has fallen to 16.3 percent, so they got a one-third tax cut as their income went up 7 to 1.”
Getting money out of politics is also a big issue for Buffett, and he knows that Clinton is our best hope of getting it done:
Buffett himself has expressed disdain for the role of money in politics, clapping on stage on Wednesday when Clinton said she would work to reverse the 2010 Citizens United v Federal Election Commission Supreme Court decision that paved the way to the creation of super PACs. Nonetheless, explained a top Clinton bundler, financial world professionals are frequently in awe of him — and sign up quickly to attend events where he’s speaking. 
“He himself is not going to bring donors in by calling them,” said the California-based donor. “But his name will."
Plus, added Democratic National Committee member Robert Zimmerman, a Clinton fundraiser, he’s famous enough to draw voters, too: “The only people who are coming to a Sheldon Adelson or David Koch event are people who are looking to walk away with a check. People who come to a Warren Buffett event want to hear what he’s got to say. They respect him."
According to Forbes, Buffett currently ranks as the 3rd richest man in the world with a net worth of over $72 billion.

Now, I'm merely a humble blogger unaffiliated with the Clinton campaign or any super PAC...but I have an idea for Warren Buffett and other progressive billionaires: match the bad guys. That is, publicly promise to match whatever money the Kochs and their cronies throw into the 2016 election at all levels, dollar for dollar. This would level the financial playing field for Democratic and Republican candidates, as well as progressive and conservative causes.

The reasoning is twofold. One, much like the U.S and the Soviets during the Cold War, it might encourage the Kochs and their buddies to not use their weapons if the other side is guaranteed to respond in kind. And two, even we get a temporary spending war, a Hillary Clinton presidency would result in a much-saner Supreme Court that would overturn Citizens United and make such crazy campaign spending a thing of the past.

Short term loss...long term gain, for progressive rich guys and the American people alike.

Think about it, Mr. Buffett.

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