“A federal income tax is a tax on your income,” said Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine.
“The federal income-tax code is the code for America, and it is a very bad system for working people.”
It’s also a system that’s a major part of the tax plan that President Donald Trump and Republican leaders are working to craft.
The plan’s core components are a reduction in the corporate tax rate, which would be the lowest in 50 years, and a major cut to the estate tax, a tax levied on estates worth more than $5.45 million.
Collins said she supports “making sure that the wealthiest Americans pay their fair share of taxes.”
But the plan also contains many proposals that she thinks would make the tax code more regressive, particularly by targeting higher-income taxpayers, like those at the very top of the income distribution.
“We’ve had a system in this country that’s really tilted toward the very wealthy,” Collins said.
The top two earners in the country are almost exclusively the top 0.1 percent, which has grown to more than a fifth of all income in the United States.
The GOP plan would tax all incomes from the top to the bottom, as well as corporations.
It would repeal a measure known as the Buffett Rule, which prevents the wealthy from paying taxes on their dividends.
The Republicans also want to repeal a rule that lets employers deduct up to $10,000 of their employees’ salary and $250 of their employer’s contribution to health insurance.
Collins has introduced bills to do away with both the Buffett rule and the deductibility of employer contributions.
The biggest change would be to the individual income tax.
The bill would eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax, which was introduced in 1993 by President Bill Clinton and extended in 2010 by then-President Barack Obama.
The tax rate would be cut from 39.6 percent to 28 percent, and the top rate would go from 39 percent to 25 percent.
Collins noted that, as president, Trump has not proposed an alternative to the Alternative Minimal Tax, saying, “We don’t have a tax plan.”
She said the tax cut for individuals and families would be offset by eliminating the estate and alternative minimum tax, which currently amount to more in the tax system than any other tax.
“This is a big reduction in taxes on the middle class,” Collins added.
Collins also said the bill would also eliminate the alternative minimums for individuals who earn less than $250,000 a year and for families who earn $250 to $1 million.
She also proposed a 10-percent corporate tax cut, a 10 percent estate tax cut and a 15 percent alternative minimum wage.
“I’m all for the middle and working class paying their fair shares,” Collins concluded.
“But I think it’s going to be a tax system that really hurts people, and I’m really concerned about that.”