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OBAMA'S TAX WAR ON U.S. SUPER-RICH; President fires first shot in Congress cuts struggle.

Byline: ALANA FEARON

TOUGH-talking Barack Obama has declared war on America's super-rich with plans to hit them with a new tax.

uS billionaires are dodging high taxes and often paying less than those who work for them thanks to loopholes in the revenue laws.

But the "Buffett tax" Mr Obama is proposing to congress today will squeeze the wallet of anyone earning more than EUR725,000. the move will appeal to cashstrapped American voters bracing themselves for more than EUR2trillion in cuts.

the President is hoping to boost his ratings after taking a series of hammerings in the opinion polls.

White House communications chief Dan Pfeiffer said the tax would ensure America's millionaires pay a minimum rate of tax that at least matches that of ordinary families.

the President is keen to use his plan to counter Republican claims he is a "taxand-spend" liberal as he campaigns for re-election next year.

But congress can ignore his suggestions and Republicans who control the House of Representatives insisted they will not agree to tax hikes.

if Mr Obama pushes for tax increases that stand little chance of being passed by a divided congress, it may help him blame lawmakers for ruining his costcutting plans.

But he is also under pressure to show leadership after the uS' AAA credit rating was slashed.

A super-committee of six Democratic and six Republican politicians must find at least EUR1trillion in deficit savings before the end of the year to avoid crippling automatic cuts.

those savings are on top of the $917billion deficit reduction agreed to in an August deal.

Obama has also urged the supercommittee to consider $467billion in tax increases to pay for a jobs Bill he unveiled earlier this month.

He has repeatedly called on congress to close tax loopholes for "millionaires and billionaires."

Irish Mirror Comment: Page 10

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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 19, 2011
Words:310
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