Monday, November 24th, 2014

The Obameter

Tracking Obama's Campaign Promises

Increase the capital gains and dividends taxes for higher-income taxpayers

Increase capital gains and dividends taxes from 15 to 20 percent for those making more than $250,000 (couples) or $200,000 (single)

Eliminate all oil and gas tax loopholes

"Eliminating special tax breaks for oil and gas companies: including repealing special expensing rules, foreign tax credit benefits, and manufacturing deductions for oil and gas firms."

Eliminate capital gains taxes for small businesses and start-ups

"Barack Obama understands that small businesses are the engines of our economy, and he will eliminate all capital gains taxes on investments in small and start-up firms."

Extend child tax credits and marriage-penalty fixes

Will extend aspects of the Bush tax cuts such as child credit expansions and changes to marriage bonuses and penalties.

Expand the earned income tax credit

Expand the earned income tax credit for workers without children and taxpayers with more than three children. Equalize threshholds for married filers and head of household filers.

Create an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to invest in peer-reviewed manufacturing processes

"Will create an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to identify and invest in the most compelling advanced manufacturing strategies. The Fund will have a peer-review selection and award process based on the Michigan 21st Century Jobs Fund, a state-level initiative that has awarded over $125 million to Michigan businesses with the most innovative proposals to create new products and new jobs in the state."

Double funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership, a program that encourages manufacturing efficiency

"The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) works with manufacturers across the country to improve efficiency, implement new technology and strengthen company growth. This highly-successful program has engaged in more than 350,000 projects across the country and in 2006 alone, helped create and protect over 50,000 jobs. But despite this success, funding for MEP has been slashed by the Bush administration. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will double funding for the MEP so its training centers can continue to bolster the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturers."

Include environmental and labor standards in trade agreements

"He will use trade agreements to spread good labor and environmental standards around the world"

Expand the child and dependent care credit

Expand and make refundable the child and dependent care credit.

Require publicly traded financial partnerships to pay the corporate income tax

Require publicly traded financial partnerships to pay the corporate income tax.

Create an international tax haven watch list

Create an international tax haven watch list of countries that do not share information returns with the United States.

Close loopholes in the corporate tax deductibility of CEO pay

Congress has set rules regarding the tax deductibility of the salaries of CEOs, but forms of non-salary compensation have become popular. Obama would look at revamping definitions of compensation.

Create a foreclosure prevention fund for homeowners

Create a $10 billion fund to help homeowners refinance or sell their homes. "The Fund will not help speculators, people who bought vacation homes or people who falsely represented their incomes."

Increase minority access to capital

"Strengthen Small Business Administration programs that provide capital to minority-owned businesses, support outreach programs that help minority business owners apply for loans, and work to encourage the growth and capacity of minority firms."

Require economic justification for tax changes

Adopt the economic substance doctrine, a policy that states that tax changes must have significant economic justification, as a federal law.

Provide option for a pre-filled-out tax form

Will direct the Internal Revenue Service to "give taxpayers the option of a pre-filled tax form to verify, sign and return to the IRS or online. This will eliminate the need for Americans to hire expensive tax preparers and to gather information that the federal government already has on file."

Create a mortgage interest tax credit for non-itemizers

Create a refundable tax credit equal to 10 percent of mortgage interest for nonitemizers, up to a maximum credit of $800.

Make permanent the Research & Development tax credit

The Research & Development tax credit and the renewable energy production tax credit are intended to spur innovation in the private sector, but the tax credits have expiration dates under current law. Obama would make them permanent.

Require automatic enrollment in 401(k) plans

Automatic enrollment in 401(k) plans for workers whose employers offer retirement plans.

Require automatic enrollment in IRA plans

Require employers who do not offer retirement plans to offer their workers access to automatic IRAs and contribute via payroll deduction.