(NEWSER) – President Obama will take the podium Tuesday night in the US Capitol and use this year's State of the Union to lay out a raft of middle class tax reforms and benefits that he wants to pay for on the backs of the nation's wealthiest—and, as Politico puts it, he'll "practically dare Republicans to say no." What's involved:
- Them's the breaks: Obama's expanded benefits for the middle class would include tripling the child-care tax break, reports the Wall Street Journal; consolidating and expanding education credits; rolling out a new credit for households in which both spouses work; and making retirement programs available to an additional 30 million Americans. The cost? About $175 billion over a decade, notes Politico—that's in addition to $60 billion Obama already wants to spend to make community college free.
- Who's footing the bill: Obama wants to raise $320 billion over 10 years, which should make the Republicans currently running Congress happy. Not so happy: He wants to do it by closing the so-called "trust fund loophole" (ie, vastly increasing the amount of inherited money that can be taxed), jacking the capital gains and dividend tax rates to 28% on those making more than $500,000 a year (for context, the AP notes that's the same rate as under President Reagan; it currently sits at 23.8%, up from 15%), and rolling out a bevy of bank fees. In short, an administration insider tells the Washington Post that 99% of the impact would fall on the nation's top 1% of earners.
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