A party calling themselves the “Patriotic Millionaires” are planning to lobby legislators Wednesday for higher taxes on the wealthy, but the group of taxpayers have left behind one of their founders: Andrew Tobias, the Democratic Party’s treasurer.
Tobias is listed as a member in the Nov. 14 message from the group, but his name is absent from the list of 19 wealthy men — and only 2 wealthy women — who will ask Congress on Wednesday to boost tax bills for them and roughly 375,000 other people earning more than $1 million per year.
Tobias has served as treasurer and chief fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee since 1999. The committee has raised hundreds of millions of dollars to help elect numerous Democratic legislators and President Barack Obama.
Since 1999, the national debt has risen from $5.6 trillion to almost $15 trillion. That works out to an average of $3.74 billion for every day that Tobias has worked at the DNC.
The debt has increased by roughly $5 trillion since Tobias helped elect Obama in 2008.
Tobias is personally wealthy, mainly owing to income earned from writing financial advice books.
Tobias’s promotion of higher taxes compliments the campaign by Obama to raise taxes on “millionaires and billionaires.” The pitch is a central part of his re-election campaign, and some have alleged it is intended to portray Republicans as defenders of the rich and as comfortable during a tough recession.
In contrast, Republicans say wealthy people should be allowed to keep most of their money, and that low taxes spur the economic growth and job-creation that may reduce today’s unemployment rate below its national level of 9 percent.
The number of millionaires plunged 27 percent in 2008. However, since Obama’s election, despite a stalled economy, the number has risen by 16 percent in 2009 and 8 percent in 2010, according to a March 2011 report by the Spectrem Group, a market-research firm.
In 2008, the top 10 percent of earners paid 71 percent of all income taxes, and the top 1 percent paid 38 percent of all income taxes, according to federal data analyzed by the Heritage Foundation. That’s a higher proportion than prior to the tax cuts won by by former President George W. Bush, when the top 10 percent paid 66 percent of all income taxes, and the top 1 percent paid 34 percent of income taxes.
In 2008, the bottom 50 percent of earners paid 2.7 percent of income taxes.
The 21 wealthy people seeking higher taxes today are all Democrats, and most have contributed heavily to Obama and other Democrats.
For example, David desJardins, a Californian who made his fortune while working for Google, has donated $335,000 to Democratic causes since 2008.
The 21 protestors, including several Google employees, lawyers and venture capitalists, have donated at least $3.2 million to Democratic political groups since 2008, according to the Open Secrets database maintained by the Center for Responsive Politics.
For every $1 donated by this group, the national debt grew b $1.56 million while Obama served as president.
It is not clear how many jobs the “Patriotic Millionaires” have created since 2008.