I know that a lot of us believed when we lowered capital gains rates in the 1990’s, that that was the right thing to do; that it would stimulate growth. (But) you go ten, 15 years later, and you see this divide between the richest Americans and the poorest Americans. You drive through Manhattan, Greenwich (Connecticut), where people have just accumulated — and Boston, wherever — just remarkable wealth! Vast sums of wealth! They are, you know, the landed gentry! And you sit there and you go, ‘You know what? These people that live in these mansions, and private jets, and live an extraordinary life like few Americans lived 30 years ago — they can probably deal with a 20 percent tax rate on capital gains instead of 15 percent. I don’t think that’s going to wreck the economy.’
And I think there are a lot of Republicans that are saying what a few of us were saying (during) the election — I think Bill Kristol said it: ‘Why are we fighting and risking our majorities protecting billionaires that are hedge fund guys that are paying (a) 14 per cent (effective tax rate)?