2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang paused for a moment when asked how he would afford giving every U.S. citizen over 18 years old $1,000 a month Thursday during the second Democratic debate night.
Yang, an entrepreneur, is campaigning on his popular universal basic income (UBI) policy that would give every adult American an allowance of $1,000 a month, which he calls “the Freedom Dividend.” (RELATED: Meet 2020 Candidate Andrew Yang And His Top 5 Campaign Points)
“Andrew Yang, your signature policy is to give every adult in the United States $1,000 a month. I think that’s, like, $3.2 trillion a year. How would you do that?” moderator and NBC anchor José Diaz-Balart asked.
“I’m sorry?” Yang responded.
“How would you do that?” Diaz-Balart repeated.
Yang explained how a value-added tax on billion-dollar companies like Amazon would generate “over $800 billion in revenue,” which, on top of the money the United States already generated, would create a “trickle-up economy.” (RELATED: Andrew Yang Promises $12,000 To One Lucky Twitter User Who Follows Him By July 4)
“Oh, so, it’s difficult to do if you have companies like Amazon — trillion-dollar tech companies — paying literally $0 in taxes while they’re closing 30% of our stores,” Yang started, earning some applause.
“Now, we need to put the American people in a position to benefit from all these innovations and other parts of the economy, and if we had a value-added tax of half the European level, we would generate over $800 billion in new revenue, which, combined with the money in our hands, would be the trickle-up economy from our people, families and communities up.”
He went on to say that just having a mentally stronger community would “increase GDP by $700 billion.”
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