How novel is President Biden's proposed tax increase? The newspapers have answers:
A Wall Street Journal editorial: "Mr. Biden proposes to finance all this with some $3 trillion in tax increases, the largest tax hike as a share of the economy since 1968, according to Strategas Research Partners. ...The budget forecasts that revenue as a share of GDP will average 19.3% between 2022 and 2031. Revenue has averaged 17.3% since 1970 and has only exceeded 19% of GDP in five years since World War II."
And a New York Times news article (Headline, "Biden Banks on $3.6 Trillion Tax Hike on the Rich and Corporations"): "The conservative Tax Foundation estimated that high-earning taxpayers in some states could face tax rates on their capital gains that are above 50 percent, the highest such tax burden in a century....The tax increases, which by some estimates are the largest in modern history."
When even the New York Times news columns are describing the tax increases as "the largest in modern history" one begins to wonder whether the depictions of Biden as a moderate are accurate. Maybe it's all just a bargaining position, a starting point for negotiations with Congress. Biden was forthright during the campaign about his plans to raise capital gains taxes (see "Biden's Plan To Double the Capital Gains Tax," October 31, 2020), but he wasn't exactly running campaign commercials in Pennsylvania or Georgia about his plans for the largest tax increases in modern history, or raising taxes to the highest rates in 100 years. In comparison to the wealth taxes proposed by Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders, the Biden tax increases looked less radical or scary. The context matters.