The Breakdown

Explaining Southern California's economy

Game on! Warren Buffett to be bankrupted by GOP Congress

Warren Buffett, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, attends the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference.
Warren Buffett, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, attends the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Last year, Warren Buffett wrote a much-cited and blogged-about op-ed for the New York Times arguing that rich people don't pay enough taxes. Fine, responded the anti-tax Republican crowd, suggesting that if Buffett was so hot to part with his money, he could always write the government a check.

A change to tax forms was proposed, allowing wealthy taxpayers to pay more, to reduce the national debt. And now Buffett is saying that he'll match, from his vast fortune, dollar-for-dollar whatever Republcian members of Congress voluntarily contribute.

The U.S. national debt currently stands at $15.2 trillion, about a trillion more than the entire yearly GDP of $14.5 trillion. Warren Buffett is worth about $50 billion. The average net worth in Congress was about $750,000. Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, a Republican, is worth $294 million.

It would therefore take 166 Republican members of Congress, with a net worth equal to McCaul's, donating their entire net worth to the IRS, to send Warren Buffett to the poor house. It's safe to assume that the GOP in Congress doesn't quite have these resources — even though there are 289 GOP members of Congress.

How, then, can the GOP Congress silence Buffett be driving him into impecuniousness? Well, clearly, they will need to get rid of anyone in their ranks who isn't Michael McCaul. That means no more Sean Duffys! 

The quickest route would obviously be to make McCaul one of the lower rungs on the financial ladder. More extremely wealthy GOP Senators and Congress members! 

This will silence Buffett at last.

Help KPCC improve our comments section! Take a 5 minute survey

blog comments powered by Disqus

Enjoy reading The Breakdown? You might like KPCC’s other blogs.

What's popular now on KPCC