On Monday, the Patriotic Millionaires took their fight to close the carried interest loophole to New York state lawmakers in Albany. Morris Pearl, Leo Hindery, Jr., and Eric Schoenberg represented the group in a series of meetings and press events designed to highlight a new piece of legislation introduced by New York State Assemblymen Jeffrion L. Aubry and Sean Ryan.
"Carried interest" is the outdated, unjust, and corrupt tax loophole that allows Wall Street fund managers to pay a lower tax rate than regular New Yorkers. Last year, the Patriotic Millionaires began a multi-year effort to draw attention to this blatant example of money corrupting public policy. Congress has thus far refused to act. Determined to show Wall Street that it is the people who run America, this year the Patriotic Millionaires are executing a state-by-state campaign.
The New York Times released a national piece praising the campaign. In the article, Patriotic Millionaire Whitney Tilson defined the loophole as “ridiculous and unfair.” Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) boasted about this piece on Twitter. Reuters, Politico, ABC, NBC and Fox all covered the Patriotic Millionaires trip to the state capital.
The Patriotic Millionaires’ goal is to work with their fellow citizens to create an overwhelming public demand - a true mandate -for economic policies that serve regular Americans and political process policies that ensure everyone fully and equally participates in the American democracy.
Watch the Patriotic Millionaires summarize their day on Time Warner Cable News Capital Tonight.
Journalist Dan Levy of NBC NewsChannel 13 started his coverage asking the question on most people’s minds: “Can you imagine anybody demanding they be allowed to pay more taxes in New York State?” Provoking rumination, Reuters led their coverage with the statement “‘Patriotic Millionaires’ are hoping to end what they call ‘one of Wall Street's most beloved tax loopholes’ in New York and other states.” You are invited to read those full stories HERE and HERE.
Conservative estimates of tax receipts from closing the carried interest loophole in New York stand at $3.7 billion. The New York Post and Dealbreaker see the revolutionary idea of New York pioneering legislation on closing the loophole. This is money that could be invested in infrastructure, jobs, and clean energy- all boosting the economy in New York.
The Patriotic Millionaires put in their own words why they fight to close the loophole:
- Leo Hindery Jr. pointed out it is time we “restored the progressive taxation that built this nation.”
- Eric Schoenberg exclaimed "Why somebody who is making one million dollars a year running a venture capital fund ought to pay lower taxes then a plumber earning $50,000 a year fixing sinks, I don't get it!”
- From past events, Patriotic Millionaire Terence Meehan had stated, the loophole is “welfare for the wealthy.”
Closing out the day, Morris Pearl highlighted the carefully constructed multi-state campaign in New York’s public radio broadcasting hour called Capitol Pressroom.
New York has the chance to lead the way in a multi-state effort to close the carried interest loophole and take a big step towards a more just tax system.