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November 05, 2007

Vote Democrat, The Party of the Rich

It's long been this way, but the Financial Times has finally realized it. At least they've allowed a wonk from a Heritage Foundation to pen an editorial revealing The Awful Truth.

Alegislative proposal that was once on the fast track is suddenly dead. The Senate will not consider a plan to extract billions in extra taxes from megamillionaire hedge fund managers.

The decision by Senate majority leader Harry Reid, the Nevada Democrat, surprised many Washington insiders, who saw the plan as appealing to the spirit of class warfare that infuses the Democratic party. Liberal disappointment in Mr Reid was palpable at media outlets such as USA Today, where an editorial chastised: "The Democrats, who control Congress and claim to represent the middle and lower classes, ought to be embarrassed."

Far from embarrassing, this episode may reflect a dawning Democratic awareness of whom they really represent. For the demographic reality is that, in America, the Democratic party is the new "party of the rich". More and more Democrats represent areas with a high concentration of wealthy households. Using Internal Revenue Service data, the Heritage Foundation identified two categories of taxpayers - single filers with incomes of more than $100,000 and married filers with incomes of more than $200,000 - and combined them to discern where the wealthiest Americans live and who represents them.

Democrats now control the majority of the nation's wealthiest congressional jurisdictions. More than half of the wealthiest households are concentrated in the 18 states where Democrats control both Senate seats.

This new political demography holds true in the House of Representatives, where the leadership of each party hails from different worlds. Nancy Pelosi, Democratic leader of the House of Representatives, represents one of America's wealthiest regions. Her San Francisco district has more than 43,700 high-end households. Fewer than 7,000 households in the western Ohio district of House Republican leader John Boehner enjoy this level of affluence.

It's nice to be rich enough to not care much about taxes and the economy. But it's not nice for the plutocrats to pull up the ladder of opportunity and thus protect their privileged positions.


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posted by Ace at 03:32 PM

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