Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Calls for “Wealth Tax” for NYC’s Billionaires


Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is throwing her support behind a bill that would tax not just income for wealthy New Yorkers, but wealth. The revenue would be used, Ocasio-Cortez says, to create an emergency worker bailout fund for poor and undocumented New Yorkers.

The tax would tax the wealthy on unrealized gains in their stock portfolios. Under current law, investments aren’t taxed unless they are sold and a profit (or a loss) is realized.

The New York State Legislature is to start debating the bill when they return on Monday.

“It’s time to stop protecting billionaires, and it’s time to start working for working families,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a tweet directed at NY’s Governor Andrew Cuomo; the message spread on Twitter with the hashtag #MakeBillionairesPay.

Cuomo has opposed taxes on the wealthy in the past, saying such taxes would drive the wealthy out of New York State.

There are about 100 individuals with a net worth over a billion dollars that call New York home, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. Their wealth often comes from finance, but fortunes have been made in other professions as well such as real estate, media and industry.

Photo by Dimitri Rodriguez

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