Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney faulted President Obama for engaging in class warfare and warned that his proposed tax increases would kill jobs at small businesses in the country and depress corporate investment.
"I don't want to raise the individual marginal tax rate from 35 to 40 percent; I know there are some who think that thats a great way to go after rich people," Romney said at the Business Roundtable yesterday. "54 percent of America's workers work in businesses taxed at the individual tax rate -- you raise that marginal tax rate from 35 to 40, and you kill jobs," he said.
President Obama and Senate Democrats want to raise the top tax bracket to 39 percent. "The various proposals to raise income taxes on high-income earners, either by increasing the top marginal rate, closing 'loopholes,' limiting deductions, or implementing a minimum tax, would fall very heavily on America’s non-corporate businesses," The Tax Foundation concluded in an analysis of corporate and small business tax rates.
"Taxes will be raised," Romney said of Obama's second term. "The idea of raising the dividend tax from 15 percent to 44 percent -- think of that. Think of what that means to the decision to invest in enterprises in this country. The capital gains tax will be raised from 15 to 24. That includes the income tax plus the Obamacare tax."
Obama has built his reelection campaign around such proposals, coupled with an attack (driven by Hollywood director Steven Spielberg, reportedly) on Romney over layoffs that took place where Bain Capital had invested.
"Shame on anybody who thinks we're going to divide the country based on success," Romney said, implicitly attacking Obama. "This is all, for me, not about punishing one American versus another, not about assuming someones an enemy inside our nation -- all our streets are connected. This is one nation under God. This is about getting Americans to work and having government be part of the solution, not part of the problem."
Romney told the assembled CEOs that he won't subsidize them as Obama has. "Crony capitalism -- I know not everyone is happy with my discourse on this," he said. "I don't think government should be investing in individual companies to try and promote individual companies."
The former governor worked in a joke at Obama's expense: "I don't believe in the government picking winners; or, in the case of our government, picking losers," Romney said, alluding to Solyndra and the other high-profile bankruptcies that took place despite government loans and grants.