What Every Democratic Presidential Candidate Has to Say about Taxes (Part 2)

Has it been a week already? The first round of democratic primary debates took place just over a week ago, during which viewers watched every democratic presidential candidate, over two nights of ten, square off on major contentious topics including health care and foreign policy.

If you’re big into politics, you’ve probably spent the last week keeping up with the countless articles and reactions to the debates. Regardless where you lean politically, however, it’s always good to be informed about where political hopefuls stand on the issues that matter to you most.

We’re not here to get political. Far from it, in fact!

As a tax mediation firm, what we are here to do is offer a brief rundown of where all the candidates stand on tax policy. With so many candidates, it can be surprisingly difficult to get the information you’re looking for on where a specific person stands on a specific issue. And tax policy is no exception.

Last week, we covered each democratic presidential candidate from debate night one, so be sure to check out that article if you’re looking for these candidates:

  • Elizabeth Warren
  • Amy Klobuchar
  • Julián Castro
  • Cory Booker
  • Bill de Blasio
  • Beto O’Rourke
  • John Delaney
  • Tim Ryan
  • Jay Inslee
  • Tusli Gabbard

Now, let’s move to night two.

Democratic Presidential Candidates – Night 2

Did you know there are actually more than twenty candidates currently in the field?

There are! Unfortunately, we can’t cover everyone; we’re only covering the candidates who spoke at the debates. After all, each democratic presidential candidate qualified based on meeting certain polling and donation criteria.

Therefore, let’s kick things off!

Kamala Harris

U.S. Senator from California

Harris’s tax plan has taken aim at offering middle and working class taxpayers a tax credit of $6,000 a year to help them keep up with cost of living. To sum up, she proposes paying for this tax gift by placing a fee on financial institutions and repealing portions of the 2017 tax laws that benefit taxpayers making over $100,000.

Michael Bennet

U.S. Senator from Colorado

You’ll need to look to some of Bennet’s work as a U.S. Senator to get insight into his tax priorities. For example, in 2019, he worked on the Working Families Tax Relief Act, which would cut taxes for workers and families by expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC).

Eric Swalwell

U.S. Representative from California

Among other issues, Swalwell’s focus seems to indicate his support for policies that bolster economic activity within low-income communities.

Pete Buttigieg

Mayor of South Bend, IN

Though not specifically endorsing it in interviews, Buttigieg has referred to a 70 percent marginal tax rate, a popular idea within some progressive circles. For instance, he has said, “I think the idea that some people aren’t paying their fair share, and we’ve got to change that—that’s something most Americans get.”

Bernie Sanders

U.S. Senator from Vermont

A carryover candidate from 2016, Sanders and his tax policies are among the most well known—and progressive—in the field. Among other things, he would work to increase the federal estate tax to 77 percent on the wealthiest 0.2 percent of Americans.

Kirsten Gillibrand

U.S. Senator from New York

In the same vein as John Delaney and Tusli Gabbard, Gillibrand has been opposed to some of the tax cuts within the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. In the U.S. Senate, she has also worked on policies benefitting veterans, homeowners, small business owners, and others.

Joe Biden

Fmr. Vice President, Fmr. U.S. Senator from Delaware

According to his campaign, Biden would aim to reverse the parts of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 that benefit the wealthy. Theoretically, this could imply he would prioritize aiding the working and middle classes.

John Hickenlooper

Fmr. Governor of Colorado

For Hickenlooper, a tax plan includes the creation of an “entrepreneurship tax credit” for small businesses with no more than five employees or $10 million in revenue. Additionally, he proposes ending tax loopholes for “very wealthy” Americans and creating incentives for startups in “rural and distressed areas.”

Andrew Yang


The central focus of Yang’s campaign is his economic policies. He has proposed a Value-Added Tax, which would target closing loopholes for large companies that move their profits overseas to avoid taxes. Importantly, this policy would supplement other proposals, including a Universal Basic Income of $1,000 per month for each adult.

Marianne Williamson


In order to pay for many of the progressive programs she proposes, Williamson has said she would increase taxes on the wealthiest taxpayers.

Take Your Knowledge to the Ballot Box

Whether you’d consider yourself a Democrat, a Republican, an Independent, or support a different group entirely, it’s a good practice to learn about which ideas are on the table.

Hopefully, you now have a better idea of where each democratic presidential candidate stands on taxes. While many candidates won’t make it to 2020, and only one will ultimately land the nomination, one thing is certain: There’s no better time to learn than right now!

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