‘There are no rich,’ Senator-elect Rand Paul claims

By David Edwards
Friday, November 5, 2010 11:48 EDT
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Following his big win in Tuesday’s midterm elections, Senator-elect Rand Paul explained his economic philosophy in about 30 seconds during a CNN interview, claiming he wants to shield the wealthiest Americans from paying higher taxes — in the name of protecting the working class.

“I would say that [Democrats] must be in favor of a second American depression, because if you raise taxes to that consequence, that’s what will happen in this country,” Paul told CNN host Wolf Blitzer.

“What if they just raised taxes on the richest, those making more than 250,000 dollars a year?” Blitzer asked.

“Well, the thing is, we’re all interconnected. There are no rich. There are no middle class. There are no poor,” Paul explained. “You remember a few years ago, when they tried to tax the yachts, that didn’t work.”

“You know who lost their jobs?” he continued. “The people making the boats, the guys making 50,000 and 60,000 dollars a year lost their jobs. We all either work for rich people or we sell stuff to rich people. So just punishing rich people is as bad for the economy as punishing anyone. Let’s not punish anyone. Let’s keep taxes low and let’s cut spending.”

Defense of rich Americans and wealthy corporations is a reoccurring theme with Paul. In the midst of the Gulf oil spill last may, Paul argued that criticism of BP was “un-American.”

“Rand Paul’s got a plan to fix the economy: we just need to stop punishing all the sad, pathetic yacht-owners,” observed Julianne Escobedo Shepherd at Alternet. “In one short, circular statement made to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Wednesday night, the Kentucky Senator-elect has summed up the right wing’s economic views as succinctly as a one-panel cartoon.”

In Paul’s view, working class Americans must make in the neighborhood of $50,000 or $60,000. He seems to be unaware that 17 percent of the population in his home state are living below the poverty level of only $22,050 for a family of four.

Jed Lewison at Daily Kos summed up Paul’s logic in another way: “Rich people are the backbone of our economy because they are the only people who buy things and create jobs. Therefore we should cut their taxes and cut spending on everything else.”

This video is from CNN, broadcast Nov. 2, 2010 and uploaded by ThinkProgress.

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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