Obama Builds Extra $20 Billion 'Cushion' Into Funding of Jobs Bill

Cutting tax breaks beyond the plan's $447 billion price tag to make Obama look oh-so-reasonable

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President Obama has proposed funding his jobs bill by closing $467 billion in tax loopholes -- that's a $20 billion "cushion" over the $447 billion price tag of the plan he revealed Thursday, White House budget director Jack Lew told Reuters. Obama has emphasized that his jobs proposal will be totally paid for, and the extra revenue will further the White House's strategy of making the president look like the only reasonable guy in Washington and Republicans look like bratty children if they won't go along with the proposal.

Steve Holland and Matt Spetalnick report the tax breaks targeted would affect wealthy people and some companies. They include:
  • A limit on itemized deductions and certain exemptions on individuals who earn over $200,000 and families who earn over $250,000, which would raise roughly $400 billion over 10 years.
  • A proposal to treat carried interest earned by investment fund managers as ordinary income rather than taxing it at capital gains rates, which would raise $18 billion.
  • Eliminating certain oil and gas industry tax breaks that would raise $40 billion.
  • A change in corporate jet depreciation rules that would raise $3 billion.
Monday morning, Obama sent his bill to Congress in a Rose Garden ceremony (pictured above) flanked by veterans, firefighters, cops, and other wholesome Americans. How can Republicans say no to veterans? Veterans with a $20 billion cushion?
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.