A Better Alternative to the Bush Tax Cut: Could the differences be any clearer?

Fact Sheet | March 24, 2004 | By Marilyn Watkins

Executive Summary

Sending a one-time $500 prosperity dividend to every legal permanent resident of the United States would do far more than George W. Bush’s tax plan to provide an immediate boost to the economy and promote our nation’s long term economic health.

No one disagrees that the overwhelming beneficiaries of Bush’s tax plan would be the wealthiest Americans. In fact, 45% of the benefit would go to the wealthiest 1%, and 72% would go to the wealthiest 20%.

A better alternative is the Economic Policy Institute’s proposal to send a one-time $500 dividend to all permanent US residents. Families earning less than about $200,000 annually would realize far more with the prosperity dividend than under Bush’s plan.

A single parent with two children earning $21,000 would receive no benefit during the first year of Bush’s plan, but a $1,500 dividend. A married couple with two children earning $70,000 would get a $410 tax savings in the first year under Bush’s plan, but a $2,000 dividend. A couple with one child and an annual income of $216,000 would receive about the same amount under the two plans. Only the very wealthiest Americans, like President Bush himself, would do better under his plan.


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