Manchin open to billionaires tax to fund Biden social spending bill

Steve Forbes calls Sen Manchin the ‘new face’ of moderate Dems

Steve Forbes, Forbes Media editor in chief, and Steve Moore, Freedomworks VP, discuss Sen. Manchin’s comments against President Biden’s reconciliation bill on ‘Kudlow’

Moderate Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia indicated Monday that he would support tax proposals targeting billionaires amid ongoing negotiations within the party toward an agreement on President Biden’s sweeping social spending bill.

"I'm open to any type of thing that makes people pay that's not paying now, so people that don't report income like you and I do, earned income," Manchin told reporters. "There has to be a way for them to pay their fair share."

President Biden and his Democratic allies have argued that increased taxes on the wealthiest Americans will cover the costs of his social spending bill, which is expected to be roughly $2 trillion. But some moderates, including Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, have pushed back against the possibility of corporate tax hikes.

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) walks through the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., October 21, 2021. REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz (Reuters Photos)

DEMOCRATS PLAN ULTRA-BILLIONAIRES TAX TO FUND SPENDING BILL

On Sunday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore., would introduce a proposal this week placing an annual tax on billionaires’ unrealized investment gains. Biden is among those who have expressed support for the concept, occasionally referred to as a "wealth tax," which would tax billionaires on gains in their asset portfolio, rather than after the assets are sold.

President Joe Biden shields his eyes from the sun as he walks toward Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. Biden is traveling to his hometown of Scranton, Pa., to talk about infrustructure and his domestic agenda. (A (AP Photo/Susan Walsh / AP Newsroom)

PELOSI PROMISES DEMS WILL PASS SPENDING BILL 'SOON' AMID INTERNAL FIGHTING

"I wouldn’t call that a wealth tax, but it would help get at capital gains, which are an extraordinarily large part of the incomes of the wealthiest individuals and right now escape taxation until they’re realized," Yellen said during an appearance on CNN.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks during a news conference, after attending the G7 finance ministers meeting, at Winfield House in London, Britain June 5, 2021. Justin Tallis/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo (Justin Tallis/Pool via REUTERS / Reuters Photos)

Manchin said Democrats "all have a different approach" to what form the taxes could take, though he expressed support.

"I support basically everyone paying their fair share of taxes," he added.

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Democrats are attempting to bridge differences between moderate and progressive lawmakers and secure an agreement on Biden’s spending bill ahead of an Oct. 31 deadline. Manchin told reporters he hasn’t budged from his call for a bill no larger than $1.5 trillion, while progressive support a larger package of as much as $2.2 trillion.

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