Mazie Hirono on Tax Reform

Democratic challenger; Representative (HI-2)


Eliminate tax breaks for the richest 2%

Q: What principles of tax policy do you support?

A: Quite simply, I support eliminating tax breaks for the richest 2% of the country. Further, we must simplify the tax code, and we must eliminate the corporate welfare it currently includes. Also, I oppose repealing the estate tax. At a time when our deficit is more than eight trillion dollars, and growing larger each day, it is fiscally irresponsible to pursue a policy that will cost the country $1 trillion in the first ten years.

Source: 2006 Senate campaign website, mazieforcongress.com, "Issues" , Nov 7, 2006

Tax policy to spur growth

Supports tax credits to encourage aquarium, ocean science research center, and other development at Ko Olina, and other "responsible" tax incentives directly tied to some public benefit, or aimed at strategically encouraging growth of targeted industries Favors tax incentives for farms that offer high quality and distinctive products unique to Hawai'i; opposes any tax increases.
Source: Honolulu Advertiser, "Hirono: From Poverty to Quiet Power" , Sep 4, 2002

American People's Dividend: Give $300 to every person.

Hirono adopted the Progressive Caucus Position Paper:

The Problem

President Bush argues that upper income people pay a larger share of the taxes, therefore they should get a larger tax cut. We disagree. These people have significantly benefited from the economic boom of the 1990s, while those in the bottom range of incomes have received little benefit. It’s these folks that we must help. President Bush’s plan is “Reaganomics” revisited and it’s fiscally irresponsible. Despite spending $1.6 trillion or more, the President’s tax plan gives little to nothing for those with little income. In fact, anyone below 140% of the poverty line, will get a zero tax cut.

The Solution

The Progressive Caucus believes that tax relief must flow to those who need it the most, the working class and people with limited incomes. We have endorsed an idea called the American People’s Dividend. We’ll give a dividend to every American, because every American is an equal shareholder in America. We estimate the total cost to be about $900 billion over 10 years. The plan will give to every person about a $300 refundable tax credit. A married couple with 3 children will receive $1500, $300 for each member of the family. This plan is simple, easy to administer, and progressive. The plan could provide an economic stimulus since it would put money in people’s pockets immediately. Unlike the Bush proposal, which reserves 40% of the tax benefits for the wealthiest 1% of the population, our proposal gives the wealthiest 1% exactly 1% of the tax relief. This makes the bulk of tax relief available for the bulk of the population. The American People’s Dividend is payable every year the federal budget is in surplus.
Comparison of Progressive Tax Plan & Bush’s Plan
The WealthyThe Low Income
Progressive Caucus American Peoples Dividend$300$300
President Bush’s Tax Cuts$$46,000$0
Source: Progressive Caucus Press Release, "Tax Relief" 01-CPC2 on Feb 8, 2001

Minimum tax rate of 30% for those earning over $1 million.

Hirono co-sponsored Paying a Fair Share Act