President Biden echoed his calls to tax the wealthy and corporations on Monday during a speech to members of a firefighters union in Washington, D.C., telling them that firefighters shouldn’t pay higher taxes than billionaires.
Biden made the remarks to the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) conference. The IAFF was the first union to endorse Biden during the 2020 presidential campaign, and they said he is the first sitting president to address them.
"You know what [a billionaire’s] average tax rate is? Three – 3%. Poor people," Biden said, drawing laughs from the crowd. "That's why I'm proposing a billionaire tax because no billionaire should be paying a lower tax rate than a firefighter. Nobody. And by the way, they still have hundreds of billions of dollars. It's not like it's going to be a great sacrifice."
However, the top 1% of taxpayers in 2020 paid 42.3% of all federal income taxes while the bottom half of taxpayers paid 2.3% of all federal individual income taxes, according to the Tax Foundation, an independent tax policy think tank.
BIDEN PAINTS ROSY PICTURE OF INFLATION, BUT PRESSURE ON CONSUMERS AND SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS PERSISTS
Meanwhile, Biden said he wants to make both billionaires and corporations "pay their fair share" while continuing to lower the national deficit, which he claimed to have lowered by $1.7 trillion over the last two years.
The president previously made the claims about the deficit last month during the State of the Union Address, which several media outlets later called misleading and lacking context.
GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE
Fact-checkers at the time said that while it was true the deficit fell by $1.7 trillion, Biden’s fiscal policies were not the lone or leading factor, with some saying the president’s policies had added significantly to the national debt.
Fox News’ Aaron Kliegman contributed to this report.