'Living paycheck to paycheck' is middle class: Conservative pundit attacks Democratic tax reform and gets smacked down
Jon Podhoretz/MSNBC screen shot

Conservative columnist John Podhoretz got a lot of pushback Tuesday when, during a discussion about the Democratic Party's proposed tax reforms, he tried to normalize living paycheck to paycheck among the middle class.

What you see as a result of wealth inequality, host Katy Tur said, was "this class of people who have more wealth than anybody else combined, almost no middle class any longer, and people who have no money whatsoever who are basically living on the poverty line."

"We have no middle class any longer?" Podhoretz broke in sarcastically.

"We have a much smaller class than we historically used to," Tur replied over his objections. "We had a government shutdown where 800,000 federal workers were missing one or two paychecks, and a number of them said that they were worried about paying groceries."

"That doesn't mean they're not middle class," Podhoretz insisted.

"Living paycheck to paycheck is not middle class," Tur shot back.

"Sure it is. Middle class is an income level," Podhoretz continued.

"Yes, but if wages are not growing and the cost of living is higher, then certainly the income level that you are talking about that used to be middle class is no longer that," chimed in fellow panelist Zerlina Maxwell. "You're actually working poor. If you're living paycheck to paycheck and cannot buy food for your family, how is that middle class?"

Watch the video below.