Ocasio-Cortez suggests 70 percent tax for wealthy to fund climate change plan

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WASHINGTON — Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez proposed taxing the wealthy as high as 70 percent to fund a climate change plan she’s pushing called the “Green New Deal.”

“There’s an element where, yeah, people are going to have to start paying their fair share in taxes,” the freshman New York lawmaker said in an interview with Anderson Cooper that’s slated to air Sunday on CBS’ “60 Minutes.”

In a clip of the interview that was released on Friday, Cooper asked Ocasio-Cortez about the specifics of the “Green New Deal,” a plan that calls for reducing carbon emissions to zero and moving the country off of fossil fuels in 10 years.

“Once you get to the tippie-tops, on your $10 millionth dollar, sometimes you see tax rates as high as 60 percent or 70 percent. That doesn’t mean all $10 million are taxed at an extremely high rate. But it means that as you climb up this ladder, you should be contributing more,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

She also acknowledged that her goal is “ambitious.”

“It’s going to require a lot of rapid change that we don’t even conceive as possible right now,” she said. “What is the problem with trying to push our technological capacities to the furthest extent possible?”

But she added, “I think that it only has ever been radicals that have changed this country,” citing President Abraham Lincoln’s issuing of the Emancipation Proclamation and President Franklin Roosevelt pushing for the passage of Social Security.

Asked if she considers herself a radical, Ocasio-Cortez replied, “Yeah, if that’s what radical means, call me a radical.”

Ocasio-Cortez, the youngest woman elected to Congress, was sworn into the U.S. House on Thursday. A Democratic-Socialist, she has also pushed Medicare for all, tuition-free public college, canceling all student loan debt and housing as a federal right.

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