Besides Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, two other candidates are running for the President of the United States of America: Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. The tax policies of these candidates reflect their political philosophies.
According to Johnson’s website, “For far too long, tax laws have been used not just as a means to collect needed revenues, but as a way for special interests to penalize their competitors while subsidizing themselves.” Gary Johnson believes that the U.S. tax policy helps those powerful enough to manipulate it, and hurts the average American. Johnson proposes to eliminate all tax loopholes, all income taxes and payroll taxes and replace it with a single consumption tax. A consumption tax is a tax on what you purchase. Johnson thinks this would save Americans a great deal of time, that it is fair because it treats all people the same, and that it would encourage the American economy to grow.
According to Stein’s website, “My Power to the People Plan creates deep system change, moving from the greed and exploitation of corporate capitalism to a human-centered economy that puts people, planet and peace over profit.” Stein does not have an explicit tax policy, but rather goals that are related to taxes. She wants to “increase government revenues, restore full employment, cut the dangerous military budget, rewrite the entire tax code to be truly progressive with tax cuts for working families, the poor and middle class, and higher taxes for the richest Americans.”
Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson and Green candidate Jill Stein have extremely different political philosophies. Johnson wants to have a minimal government that treats all individuals the same, regardless of their economic position. Stein wants to have a large government that treats individuals differently depending on their economic position. Johnson wants to tax everyone the same percentage of what they purchase. Stein wants to tax those she calls rich and she wants to provide tax cuts for everyone else, though she does not specify what amount of income or worth means someone is rich.
This November, American will choose their President, and one of the variables Americans will decide will be on the tax policies of the various candidates. Johnson’s and Stein’s tax policies are very different from each other.
1. What is Johnson's party and what is his tax plan?
2. What is Stein's party and what is her tax plan?
3. What does Johnson's tax plan tell you about his political philosophy?
4. What does Stein's tax plan tell you about her political philosophy?
5. Which tax policy do you think would make America stronger?