Oh, for Pete’s sake . . . really, Herm?
Apparently, everyone misheard Herman Cain when he called his tax plan the “999” plan – because it’s now become the “909” plan and he said the elements of the “0” part – helping the poor – have been there all along. As reported by PoliticsAnonymous.com, Cain’s tax plan in its original form would increase taxes on the poorest individuals by double digits, hike the middle class’ taxes, and reduce the richest Americans’ taxes by about the same amount as the poor’s is increased. But that’s all changed now.
Said Cain, “If you’re at or below the poverty level, your plan isn’t ‘9-9-9 . . . It’s ‘9-zero-9.’ Say ‘Amen,’ y’all! In other words, if you are at or below the poverty level based upon family size, because there’s a different number for each one, then you don’t pay that middle ‘9′ tax on your income. This is how we help the poor.”
So, Herm went back to the well on his 9-9-9 plan – but only after it was vetted, and it was determined by real economists (not to be confused with Rich Lowrie, the non-economist who Cain revealed as the initial plan “vetter”) that it would raise taxes sharply on lower incomes and increase taxes on the middle class but – true to Republican form – the higher earners would see a tax decrease.
And the American public has also done some vetting and determined that Cain is a flat-out liar, coming up with new language he said was always there with regard to exemptions for the poor. In fact, as reported by Think Progress, on CNN with Candy Crowley, Cain was specific that there would be NO exemptions for the poor:
“CROWLEY: Let me move you to your plan . . . 999. I know you love to talk about this. So, this would be — your plan would be to have everybody pay 9 percent of their gross income and the only thing you could deduct would be charitable contributions.
CROWLEY: 9 percent corporate tax rate, now at 35 percent just for purposes of comparison. And then a 9 percent sales tax or consumption tax.
CROWLEY: So the criticism of this has been, a, it won’t raise enough money as much money as is need, and, b, it is really regressive, because I would pay the same amount for a blouse in taxes as someone making $10,000 a year and that’s regressive. It’s not fair . . . So a person poor person is paying the same amount of tax on groceries as I am.
CAIN: Right. Now…
CROWLEY: Does that sound fair to you, just in a vacuum?
CAIN: Yes, it does sound fair, because of the other point that I’m about to make. If they need to buy a car or a home or some hard goods that are used, they pay no taxes. So they have an opportunity for them to leverage their income.”
Two short weeks ago, it was 9-9-9, and the poor would be given no exemptions.
Two weeks later, it’s 9-0-9 and he had exemptions for the poor built in all along – people just didn’t “read his plan all the way through.”
Republican candidates are crashing and burning faster than the N.B.A.