Gotham Gazette Gotham Gazette is an online publication covering New York policy and politics as well as news on public safety, transportation, education, finance and more. http://www.gothamgazette.com/component/tags/tag/taxes 2018-06-19T02:57:33+00:00 Webmaster webmaster@gothamgazette.com On Taxes, the MTA and More, Molinaro Discusses Developing Campaign Platform 2018-06-14T04:00:00+00:00 2018-06-14T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7740:on-taxes-the-mta-and-more-molinaro-discusses-developing-campaign-platform Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/molinaro_launch.jpg" alt="marc molinaro launch" width="600" height="403" /></p> <p>Marc Molinaro (photo: Ben Max/Gotham Gazette)</p> <hr /> <p>Ask Marc Molinaro about nearly anything, and the Republican nominee for governor will likely bring the conversation back to property taxes and affordability.</p> <p>“My focus, ultimately, will be to drive down costs on middle class New Yorkers,” he said in a Wednesday interview with Gotham Gazette. “That focus, again, has to be on property taxes because New York, unlike every other state in America, forces more of its state spending on property taxpayers. Property taxpayers -- small tax base; large, acute burden on individuals with no respect to their ability to pay.”</p> <p>Molinaro, currently Dutchess county executive, has repeatedly sounded the theme since <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/city/7583-max-murphy-podcast-molinaro-launches-campaign-for-governor" target="_blank" rel="noopener">formally launching</a> his bid for governor April 2. While he has largely spoken in sweeping generalities -- promising “bold” proposals to come during his nomination acceptance speech at the May 23 state GOP convention -- details are starting to emerge.</p> <p>Molinaro said that in addition to making the state’s 2-percent cap on annual property tax increases permanent, he would seek to phase out the so-called “millionaires tax” if elected. The income tax rate for the top bracket -- which includes individuals making $1 million or more and couples earning $2 million or more per year -- went from 6.85 to 8.82 percent in 2009, and has been extended by Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo and a Legislature where each house is controlled by one of the two major parties.</p> <p>“I would seek to have it expire over time,” Molinaro said of the millionaires tax. “I do think that there’s a way to make taxation in the state a bit more respectful of those who can’t afford it.”</p> <p>He said he will release a detailed tax plan in the coming months. While Molinaro, like many other New York Republicans, has opposed the new, GOP-led federal tax overhaul because of its cap on local deductions, he has said New York must now work even harder to bring down the tax burden on its residents. He has also stressed that the state must reduce its burdens on localities -- often in the form of unfunded mandates -- so that counties, cities, towns, and villages can lower their taxes.</p> <p>Molinaro, 42, has spent his entire career in politics, including terms as a member of the state Assembly and as mayor of Tivoli, where he became the youngest mayor in the country at age 19. He’s claiming the mantle of a regular New Yorker who gets the working and middle classes, comparing himself favorably to Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon, each of whom has much more wealth and fame. Molinaro’s tendency to talk at length about poor and struggling families in personal terms occasionally makes him sound more like a progressive Democrat than a fiscally conservative Republican.</p> <p>“As a kid, I grew up on food stamps. I’m very sensitive to how the state treats those who are on the lower end of the income scale, living maybe in poverty or subsidized housing,” he said. During his nomination acceptance speech he raised his voice in declaring the he would “not concede compassion to anyone.”</p> <p>He has made the state’s struggling dairy industry something of a focus. <a href="https://patch.com/new-york/midhudsonvalley/dutchess-co-protects-farms-through-manageable-growth-partnership" target="_blank" rel="noopener">He allocated</a> $651,781 of Dutchess County’s 2017 budget to protecting two farms there. He has been <a href="http://www.suncommunitynews.com/articles/the-sun/molinaro-seeking-cuomo%E2%80%99s-job-steps-out-in-north-country-debu/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">photographed</a> hanging out in stables and often tweets about dairy. “Dairy day. I love dairy day. I miss dairy day. I should come back to Albany for dairy day,” <a href="https://twitter.com/marcmolinaro/status/1004418463803363328" target="_blank" rel="noopener">he posted</a> on Twitter earlier this month, in lighthearted fashion, while he has <a href="https://twitter.com/marcmolinaro/status/965233189038981121" target="_blank" rel="noopener">also tweeted</a> about serious policy to help dairy farmers survive, such as through reducing regulations and taxes.</p> <p>On the state’s minimum wage law, Molinaro voiced opposition to the recent increases. In 2016, Cuomo and state legislators reached a deal raising New York City’s minimum wage to $15 by the end of this year, with slower hikes in other parts of the state.</p> <p>The Republican candidate, who also has the Conservative and Reform Party nominations, said he opposed the deal at the time and thinks the minimum wage “should be indexed to ebb and flow with the cost of living.”</p> <p>“I also don’t necessarily agree that an unelected board of individuals should be able to establish statewide policy,” he added, in reference to the wage board that Cuomo had empaneled to help him craft the policy before he pushed it through the legislative process. “Those are decisions that ought to be made by citizens and their representatives.”</p> <p>Asked whether he thought the state’s minimum wage should be lowered given broad economic growth, Molinaro replied with a laugh, “I’m not going to go there.”</p> <p>The MTA is another area where Molinaro said he will roll out detailed proposals.</p> <p>He said his priorities would be “depoliticizing” the authority’s board by giving members the power to fire the chair, currently Joe Lhota, along with conducting a thorough review of the MTA’s assets and creating a “road map” to improve service.</p> <p>“Like Joe Lhota or not, the governor has too much influence,” Molinaro said, nodding to the fact that the governor nominates the MTA board chair, as Cuomo did with Lhota. “Far too many decisions are made without input from the MTA board…I would absolutely want to empower the MTA board to be able to fire the head of the MTA.”</p> <p>Molinaro’s county includes the far reaches of the MTA transit system, and he is one of the executives empowered to jointly appoint an MTA board member. He often says that Dutchess is where “upstate meets downstate” and has joined the chorus of candidates and others criticizing Cuomo’s management of the MTA, especially the New York City subway system.</p> <p>Molinaro did not comment, when asked, on MTA NYC Transit President Andy Byford’s new plan to fix service. He mostly spoke in broad terms about the MTA’s problems -- decrying its “ineffectiveness and erosion” -- but singled out service for people with disabilities as a priority.</p> <p>“The fact is that if you are living with a disability or particular challenges -- special needs -- we don’t have adequate access, and that needs to be a priority regardless of where you live,” Molinaro said.</p> <p>That belief connects to an initiative Molinaro launched in Dutchess -- which he made a point to again emphasize during the interview -- to improve services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The program, called ThinkDIFFERENTLY, has featured events connecting people with disabilities with service providers and aims to help them develop job and life skills.</p> <p>Molinaro said the program -- which has caught on in dozens of other localities -- would provide a paradigm for how he approaches disabilities as governor. Molinaro, whose daughter is autistic, often cites his experience as a father when discussing the issue.</p> <p>“Whether it’s making the investments necessary to break down physical barriers -- making subway stops and platforms accessible -- or it’s saying to job creators, you need to do more to encourage employment for those living with disabilities or welcome those with special needs as consumers,” he said, “we need to educate and then we need to ensure that the system is easier to navigate.”</p> <p>As might be expected for a relatively unknown Republican challenging a two-term Democratic governor in New York, Molinaro has trailed Cuomo in early polls. A <a href="https://www2.siena.edu/news-events/article/cuomo-leads-molinaro-by-19-points-among-likely-voters" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Siena College poll</a> released Wednesday, about five-and-a-half months before Election Day, showed Cuomo ahead of Molinaro 56-37, though the numbers showed an improving trend for Molinaro in the hypothetical matchup and the poll was celebrated by his campaign, which noted he is in better position than Republican challenger Rob Astorino was four years ago at the same time.</p> <p>Like Democratic primary challenger Nixon, who also trails Cuomo in the polls, Molinaro has tried to put a dent in the governor’s numbers by tying him to corruption. Both challengers have pointed to the <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7539-joseph-percoco-former-top-cuomo-aide-convicted-on-3-felony-counts" target="_blank" rel="noopener">recent conviction</a> of longtime Cuomo lieutenant Joseph Percoco and the <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7558-post-percoco-conviction-kaloyeros-trial-likely-to-further-stain-cuomo-administration" target="_blank" rel="noopener">upcoming federal trial</a> of Alain Kaloyeros, the former president of SUNY Polytechnic Institute who oversaw some of Cuomo’s most ambitious development projects.</p> <p>Those cases center upon proven and alleged abuses within the governor’s multimillion-dollar economic development programs, and the Percoco trial showed the former Cuomo government aide and campaign manager regularly using his executive chamber office while on leave to run the governor’s 2014 reelection campaign. Molinaro has put forth a variety of government ethics and campaign finance reform proposals thus far, some of which Cuomo has professed support for but not passed. The GOP nominee has said he would seek pay-for-play, or doing-business, campaign finance restrictions on entities seeking or holding state contracts, term limits for statewide elected officials and state legislators, <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7611-molinaro-outlines-initial-ethics-and-campaign-finance-reform-agenda" target="_blank" rel="noopener">and other changes to make government more honest and open</a>.</p> <p>Molinaro said the trials not only show issues of corruption under Cuomo’s nose, but that the governor’s approach to economic development is fundamentally flawed.</p> <p>“I don’t believe the government should take taxpayer money and give it to private interests,” he said. “I don’t believe in cutting checks as if New Yorkers are [Cuomo’s] personal ATM. It’s not fair, it’s not appropriate and he doesn’t seem to know the difference between right and wrong.”</p> <p>Asked how he would encourage statewide economic growth if he ended Cuomo’s development programs, Molinaro again pointed to tax cuts and lowering the cost of living.</p> <p>“Drive down costs, make it easier for businesses to thrive,” he said. “That’s how you grow an environment that people can achieve greater success -- not by pickpocketing New Yorkers and giving it to political contributors.” Molinaro did not offer specifics.</p> <p>He said that if elected, he would take a selective approach to Cuomo’s legacy, though he shied away from detailing what he would seek to undo. “My perspective is everything gets evaluated -- everything,” he said.</p> <p>Molinaro did not answer a question about Cuomo’s gun control measures, including an expanded ban of assault weapons, known as the SAFE Act. While the governor has frequently touted the legislation as one of his main achievements, and New York City residents largely support it, it is considered highly unpopular upstate.</p> <p>In a January interview, more than a month before the school massacre in Parkland, Florida and the movement it spurred, Molinaro <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7581-in-run-for-governor-marc-molinaro-will-make-a-character-argument" target="_blank" rel="noopener">had told Gotham Gazette</a>, “Frankly, I do have concerns with how aggressive this governor has been. I think in some ways irresponsibly ignoring those that do support, as I do, the Second Amendment and forcing legislation without having the kind of local robust conversation necessary. I believe the constitution is as it’s written.”</p> <p>The Cuomo campaign has seized on some of Molinaro’s more conservative positions, like on gun rights and his 2011 vote against marriage equality as a member of the Assembly, the passage of which is a top Cuomo resume item. Molinaro has said he has evolved on the issue. The governor’s campaign has branded him a Trump mini-me, though Molinaro has said he did not vote for the Republican president in the 2016 election.</p> <p>In the Wednesday interview with Gotham Gazette, Molinaro did not list any other issue areas where he plans to roll out policy plans, though during his convention speech he appeared to promise a series.</p> <p>Asked how, if elected governor, he would work with the state Legislature -- this fall, Democrats are likely to maintain their Assembly majority and Republicans are fighting against losing the Senate -- Molinaro said he would try to make the lawmaking process more inclusive.</p> <p>He promised to end Albany’s “three men in a room” culture in which the governor and legislative leaders decide the budget and other important issues behind closed doors.</p> <p>“I think the government can reach into the legislature and local communities to identify great thinkers, people who are engaged in trying to solve problems irrespective of party, and engage them,” Molinaro said. “That breaks down the power structure that has paralyzed state government.”</p> <p>

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by Shant Shahrigianh, Gotham Gazette
      

Read more by this writer.

</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/molinaro_launch.jpg" alt="marc molinaro launch" width="600" height="403" /></p> <p>Marc Molinaro (photo: Ben Max/Gotham Gazette)</p> <hr /> <p>Ask Marc Molinaro about nearly anything, and the Republican nominee for governor will likely bring the conversation back to property taxes and affordability.</p> <p>“My focus, ultimately, will be to drive down costs on middle class New Yorkers,” he said in a Wednesday interview with Gotham Gazette. “That focus, again, has to be on property taxes because New York, unlike every other state in America, forces more of its state spending on property taxpayers. Property taxpayers -- small tax base; large, acute burden on individuals with no respect to their ability to pay.”</p> <p>Molinaro, currently Dutchess county executive, has repeatedly sounded the theme since <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/city/7583-max-murphy-podcast-molinaro-launches-campaign-for-governor" target="_blank" rel="noopener">formally launching</a> his bid for governor April 2. While he has largely spoken in sweeping generalities -- promising “bold” proposals to come during his nomination acceptance speech at the May 23 state GOP convention -- details are starting to emerge.</p> <p>Molinaro said that in addition to making the state’s 2-percent cap on annual property tax increases permanent, he would seek to phase out the so-called “millionaires tax” if elected. The income tax rate for the top bracket -- which includes individuals making $1 million or more and couples earning $2 million or more per year -- went from 6.85 to 8.82 percent in 2009, and has been extended by Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo and a Legislature where each house is controlled by one of the two major parties.</p> <p>“I would seek to have it expire over time,” Molinaro said of the millionaires tax. “I do think that there’s a way to make taxation in the state a bit more respectful of those who can’t afford it.”</p> <p>He said he will release a detailed tax plan in the coming months. While Molinaro, like many other New York Republicans, has opposed the new, GOP-led federal tax overhaul because of its cap on local deductions, he has said New York must now work even harder to bring down the tax burden on its residents. He has also stressed that the state must reduce its burdens on localities -- often in the form of unfunded mandates -- so that counties, cities, towns, and villages can lower their taxes.</p> <p>Molinaro, 42, has spent his entire career in politics, including terms as a member of the state Assembly and as mayor of Tivoli, where he became the youngest mayor in the country at age 19. He’s claiming the mantle of a regular New Yorker who gets the working and middle classes, comparing himself favorably to Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon, each of whom has much more wealth and fame. Molinaro’s tendency to talk at length about poor and struggling families in personal terms occasionally makes him sound more like a progressive Democrat than a fiscally conservative Republican.</p> <p>“As a kid, I grew up on food stamps. I’m very sensitive to how the state treats those who are on the lower end of the income scale, living maybe in poverty or subsidized housing,” he said. During his nomination acceptance speech he raised his voice in declaring the he would “not concede compassion to anyone.”</p> <p>He has made the state’s struggling dairy industry something of a focus. <a href="https://patch.com/new-york/midhudsonvalley/dutchess-co-protects-farms-through-manageable-growth-partnership" target="_blank" rel="noopener">He allocated</a> $651,781 of Dutchess County’s 2017 budget to protecting two farms there. He has been <a href="http://www.suncommunitynews.com/articles/the-sun/molinaro-seeking-cuomo%E2%80%99s-job-steps-out-in-north-country-debu/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">photographed</a> hanging out in stables and often tweets about dairy. “Dairy day. I love dairy day. I miss dairy day. I should come back to Albany for dairy day,” <a href="https://twitter.com/marcmolinaro/status/1004418463803363328" target="_blank" rel="noopener">he posted</a> on Twitter earlier this month, in lighthearted fashion, while he has <a href="https://twitter.com/marcmolinaro/status/965233189038981121" target="_blank" rel="noopener">also tweeted</a> about serious policy to help dairy farmers survive, such as through reducing regulations and taxes.</p> <p>On the state’s minimum wage law, Molinaro voiced opposition to the recent increases. In 2016, Cuomo and state legislators reached a deal raising New York City’s minimum wage to $15 by the end of this year, with slower hikes in other parts of the state.</p> <p>The Republican candidate, who also has the Conservative and Reform Party nominations, said he opposed the deal at the time and thinks the minimum wage “should be indexed to ebb and flow with the cost of living.”</p> <p>“I also don’t necessarily agree that an unelected board of individuals should be able to establish statewide policy,” he added, in reference to the wage board that Cuomo had empaneled to help him craft the policy before he pushed it through the legislative process. “Those are decisions that ought to be made by citizens and their representatives.”</p> <p>Asked whether he thought the state’s minimum wage should be lowered given broad economic growth, Molinaro replied with a laugh, “I’m not going to go there.”</p> <p>The MTA is another area where Molinaro said he will roll out detailed proposals.</p> <p>He said his priorities would be “depoliticizing” the authority’s board by giving members the power to fire the chair, currently Joe Lhota, along with conducting a thorough review of the MTA’s assets and creating a “road map” to improve service.</p> <p>“Like Joe Lhota or not, the governor has too much influence,” Molinaro said, nodding to the fact that the governor nominates the MTA board chair, as Cuomo did with Lhota. “Far too many decisions are made without input from the MTA board…I would absolutely want to empower the MTA board to be able to fire the head of the MTA.”</p> <p>Molinaro’s county includes the far reaches of the MTA transit system, and he is one of the executives empowered to jointly appoint an MTA board member. He often says that Dutchess is where “upstate meets downstate” and has joined the chorus of candidates and others criticizing Cuomo’s management of the MTA, especially the New York City subway system.</p> <p>Molinaro did not comment, when asked, on MTA NYC Transit President Andy Byford’s new plan to fix service. He mostly spoke in broad terms about the MTA’s problems -- decrying its “ineffectiveness and erosion” -- but singled out service for people with disabilities as a priority.</p> <p>“The fact is that if you are living with a disability or particular challenges -- special needs -- we don’t have adequate access, and that needs to be a priority regardless of where you live,” Molinaro said.</p> <p>That belief connects to an initiative Molinaro launched in Dutchess -- which he made a point to again emphasize during the interview -- to improve services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The program, called ThinkDIFFERENTLY, has featured events connecting people with disabilities with service providers and aims to help them develop job and life skills.</p> <p>Molinaro said the program -- which has caught on in dozens of other localities -- would provide a paradigm for how he approaches disabilities as governor. Molinaro, whose daughter is autistic, often cites his experience as a father when discussing the issue.</p> <p>“Whether it’s making the investments necessary to break down physical barriers -- making subway stops and platforms accessible -- or it’s saying to job creators, you need to do more to encourage employment for those living with disabilities or welcome those with special needs as consumers,” he said, “we need to educate and then we need to ensure that the system is easier to navigate.”</p> <p>As might be expected for a relatively unknown Republican challenging a two-term Democratic governor in New York, Molinaro has trailed Cuomo in early polls. A <a href="https://www2.siena.edu/news-events/article/cuomo-leads-molinaro-by-19-points-among-likely-voters" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Siena College poll</a> released Wednesday, about five-and-a-half months before Election Day, showed Cuomo ahead of Molinaro 56-37, though the numbers showed an improving trend for Molinaro in the hypothetical matchup and the poll was celebrated by his campaign, which noted he is in better position than Republican challenger Rob Astorino was four years ago at the same time.</p> <p>Like Democratic primary challenger Nixon, who also trails Cuomo in the polls, Molinaro has tried to put a dent in the governor’s numbers by tying him to corruption. Both challengers have pointed to the <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7539-joseph-percoco-former-top-cuomo-aide-convicted-on-3-felony-counts" target="_blank" rel="noopener">recent conviction</a> of longtime Cuomo lieutenant Joseph Percoco and the <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7558-post-percoco-conviction-kaloyeros-trial-likely-to-further-stain-cuomo-administration" target="_blank" rel="noopener">upcoming federal trial</a> of Alain Kaloyeros, the former president of SUNY Polytechnic Institute who oversaw some of Cuomo’s most ambitious development projects.</p> <p>Those cases center upon proven and alleged abuses within the governor’s multimillion-dollar economic development programs, and the Percoco trial showed the former Cuomo government aide and campaign manager regularly using his executive chamber office while on leave to run the governor’s 2014 reelection campaign. Molinaro has put forth a variety of government ethics and campaign finance reform proposals thus far, some of which Cuomo has professed support for but not passed. The GOP nominee has said he would seek pay-for-play, or doing-business, campaign finance restrictions on entities seeking or holding state contracts, term limits for statewide elected officials and state legislators, <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7611-molinaro-outlines-initial-ethics-and-campaign-finance-reform-agenda" target="_blank" rel="noopener">and other changes to make government more honest and open</a>.</p> <p>Molinaro said the trials not only show issues of corruption under Cuomo’s nose, but that the governor’s approach to economic development is fundamentally flawed.</p> <p>“I don’t believe the government should take taxpayer money and give it to private interests,” he said. “I don’t believe in cutting checks as if New Yorkers are [Cuomo’s] personal ATM. It’s not fair, it’s not appropriate and he doesn’t seem to know the difference between right and wrong.”</p> <p>Asked how he would encourage statewide economic growth if he ended Cuomo’s development programs, Molinaro again pointed to tax cuts and lowering the cost of living.</p> <p>“Drive down costs, make it easier for businesses to thrive,” he said. “That’s how you grow an environment that people can achieve greater success -- not by pickpocketing New Yorkers and giving it to political contributors.” Molinaro did not offer specifics.</p> <p>He said that if elected, he would take a selective approach to Cuomo’s legacy, though he shied away from detailing what he would seek to undo. “My perspective is everything gets evaluated -- everything,” he said.</p> <p>Molinaro did not answer a question about Cuomo’s gun control measures, including an expanded ban of assault weapons, known as the SAFE Act. While the governor has frequently touted the legislation as one of his main achievements, and New York City residents largely support it, it is considered highly unpopular upstate.</p> <p>In a January interview, more than a month before the school massacre in Parkland, Florida and the movement it spurred, Molinaro <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/7581-in-run-for-governor-marc-molinaro-will-make-a-character-argument" target="_blank" rel="noopener">had told Gotham Gazette</a>, “Frankly, I do have concerns with how aggressive this governor has been. I think in some ways irresponsibly ignoring those that do support, as I do, the Second Amendment and forcing legislation without having the kind of local robust conversation necessary. I believe the constitution is as it’s written.”</p> <p>The Cuomo campaign has seized on some of Molinaro’s more conservative positions, like on gun rights and his 2011 vote against marriage equality as a member of the Assembly, the passage of which is a top Cuomo resume item. Molinaro has said he has evolved on the issue. The governor’s campaign has branded him a Trump mini-me, though Molinaro has said he did not vote for the Republican president in the 2016 election.</p> <p>In the Wednesday interview with Gotham Gazette, Molinaro did not list any other issue areas where he plans to roll out policy plans, though during his convention speech he appeared to promise a series.</p> <p>Asked how, if elected governor, he would work with the state Legislature -- this fall, Democrats are likely to maintain their Assembly majority and Republicans are fighting against losing the Senate -- Molinaro said he would try to make the lawmaking process more inclusive.</p> <p>He promised to end Albany’s “three men in a room” culture in which the governor and legislative leaders decide the budget and other important issues behind closed doors.</p> <p>“I think the government can reach into the legislature and local communities to identify great thinkers, people who are engaged in trying to solve problems irrespective of party, and engage them,” Molinaro said. “That breaks down the power structure that has paralyzed state government.”</p> <p>

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by Shant Shahrigianh, Gotham Gazette
      

Read more by this writer.

</p>
The Problem with Cuomo's Payroll Tax 2018-04-09T04:00:00+00:00 2018-04-09T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7598:the-problem-with-cuomo-s-payroll-tax Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/andrew-cuomo-excelsior.jpg" alt="andrew cuomo excelsior" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p>Gov. Cuomo (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>Other high-tax states have considered it, but New York just became the first state to actually do it: &nbsp;revamp its tax code to mitigate the new $10,000 federal cap on deducting state and local taxes (SALT). As part of the new state budget, the Legislature enacted the Governor’s plan for a new voluntary 5% payroll tax New York employers can opt into. It would exempt their employees from paying state income tax, and thereby help keep them below the federal cap.</p> <p>But the new payroll tax has many detractors, including the New York Business Council, which <a href="https://www.newsday.com/long-island/politics/spin-cycle/andrew-cuomo-donald-trump-taxes-1.17327930" target="_blank" rel="noopener">called</a> many of its provisions unworkable, the New York chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, which <a href="https://www.bizjournals.com/albany/news/2018/04/02/new-york-lawmakers-restructure-tax-code-in-state.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">said</a> its members feared it sets the stage for a tax hike on small businesses, and experts convened by the Manhattan Institute, who <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/baldwin/2018/03/31/preserving-the-state-and-local-tax-deduction-bad-news/#8be422ca0bb1" target="_blank" rel="noopener">point out</a> it will penalize commuters from New Jersey and Connecticut. Many predict that only a few small, well-heeled firms will be able to take advantage of it, and many worry the IRS will simply close down the loophole Cuomo just opened.</p> <p>These objections are all well-founded, but there’s a bigger, more fundamental problem with the scheme: payroll taxes hurt job growth. &nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>In theory, employers who opt into the tax will be made whole because they can pass the cost onto workers by lowering wages 5%. &nbsp;Workers will be made whole since they wouldn’t pay state income tax, and it would help them stay below the federal deductibility limit on SALT. &nbsp;All together, it’s supposed to be a wash.</p> <p>But in practice it doesn’t work that way. Wages are “sticky” and notoriously hard to pull back once workers attain a certain number on their pay stubs. In a large workforce, getting all employees to accept a nominal 5% pay cut will be a nightmare. Even for small firms with few workers, existing contracts, minimum wage, and competition for sought-after employees will bedevil an across-the-board pay cut. As the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance <a href="https://www.tax.ny.gov/pdf/stats/stat_pit/pit/preliminary-report-tcja-2017.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">warned</a>, if employers can't pass the full tax bill onto employees, their net labor costs go up. That drives hiring down.</p> <p>The new payroll tax doesn't exist in a vacuum, but as part of the larger tax environment, which includes high federal payroll taxes that already inhibit job and economic growth. &nbsp;</p> <p>They are the biggest taxes a large majority of Americans pay, and the most regressive, squeezing workers who don’t earn enough money to pay income tax or benefit from income tax cuts. Paying payroll taxes lowers workers’ earnings and curtails consumer spending and economic growth. Even so, Congress refused to cut them when it cut federal income and corporate taxes (though Senators Lee and Rubio tried). &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>Federal payroll taxes also distort relative prices of labor versus. non-labor inputs to business (energy, materials and land) making hiring artificially expensive and consumption artificially cheap. &nbsp;The distortion amounts to over $1 trillion a year (the amount federal payroll taxes raise), or about 5.4% of GDP.</p> <p>That’s a big, structural drag on jobs that has resulted in a big, structural (though largely hidden) overhang of joblessness. There’s a shocking fact hiding in plain sight in the rosy Bureau of Labor Statistics unemployment <a href="https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.a.htm" target="_blank" rel="noopener">charts</a>: out of 257 million non-institutionalized American adults, over 100 million don’t have jobs.</p> <p>Of those, 95 million aren’t counted as “unemployed;” they’re just considered outside the workforce. &nbsp;That’s legitimate for people who are retired, or who aren’t able or don’t chose to work. But many tens of millions of them, including millions in New York, aren’t working because they lack job opportunity, due in significant part to the corrosive effects of payroll taxation.</p> <p>To whatever extent firms adopt it, New York's new payroll tax will only compound these problems.</p> <p>Instead, payroll tax should be cut to boost jobs, both at the federal and state levels, like Colorado did. Since 2008, Colorado’s Job Growth Tax Credit has refunded state payroll tax for job creating businesses. It brought thousands of high-quality jobs to the state and grew its tax base. &nbsp;</p> <p>Revenue lost from cutting payroll taxes could be replaced with non-labor taxes on resource consumption, waste, inefficiency and pollution. That’s a tax reform approach known as <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/the-big-idea/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">payroll tax shifting</a>. According to the bipartisan group <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Get America Working!</a>, which I advise, it would reverse payroll tax’s longstanding distortions, roughly doubling the job-creating effects of cutting payroll taxes alone, creating tens of millions of jobs nationwide. In New York, non-labor taxes on consumption we want to limit could raise state revenues and fund tax relief for individuals hurt by the federal deductibility cap.</p> <p>Which non-labor taxes exactly is a topic for the next budget debate. But there is no lack of options. How about getting serious about collecting the 20% of New York sales tax that still goes unpaid? Or adopting real congestion pricing instead of the quarter-measure in this year’s budget? &nbsp;Or considering the state carbon tax designed by <a href="http://www.nyrenews.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">NYRenews</a> that would raise $7 billion annually, help meet New York’s climate goals, and stimulate renewables sector jobs? &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>New York’s new payroll tax is aimed at downstate, high-paying firms. It might or might not help a narrow band of them at the cost of undercutting job growth. But New York needs a tax policy that boosts employment statewide, including upstate. That’s why we need a tax overhaul that takes the burden off employment and puts it on harmful consumption, waste and pollution.</p> <p>***<br /> Stephen Kent is president of the public interest PR practice KentCom LLC and consults for the bipartisan employment policy group <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Get America Working!</a></p> <p>

***
Have an op-ed idea or submission for Gotham Gazette? Email opinion@gothamgazette.com

</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/andrew-cuomo-excelsior.jpg" alt="andrew cuomo excelsior" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p>Gov. Cuomo (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>Other high-tax states have considered it, but New York just became the first state to actually do it: &nbsp;revamp its tax code to mitigate the new $10,000 federal cap on deducting state and local taxes (SALT). As part of the new state budget, the Legislature enacted the Governor’s plan for a new voluntary 5% payroll tax New York employers can opt into. It would exempt their employees from paying state income tax, and thereby help keep them below the federal cap.</p> <p>But the new payroll tax has many detractors, including the New York Business Council, which <a href="https://www.newsday.com/long-island/politics/spin-cycle/andrew-cuomo-donald-trump-taxes-1.17327930" target="_blank" rel="noopener">called</a> many of its provisions unworkable, the New York chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, which <a href="https://www.bizjournals.com/albany/news/2018/04/02/new-york-lawmakers-restructure-tax-code-in-state.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">said</a> its members feared it sets the stage for a tax hike on small businesses, and experts convened by the Manhattan Institute, who <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/baldwin/2018/03/31/preserving-the-state-and-local-tax-deduction-bad-news/#8be422ca0bb1" target="_blank" rel="noopener">point out</a> it will penalize commuters from New Jersey and Connecticut. Many predict that only a few small, well-heeled firms will be able to take advantage of it, and many worry the IRS will simply close down the loophole Cuomo just opened.</p> <p>These objections are all well-founded, but there’s a bigger, more fundamental problem with the scheme: payroll taxes hurt job growth. &nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>In theory, employers who opt into the tax will be made whole because they can pass the cost onto workers by lowering wages 5%. &nbsp;Workers will be made whole since they wouldn’t pay state income tax, and it would help them stay below the federal deductibility limit on SALT. &nbsp;All together, it’s supposed to be a wash.</p> <p>But in practice it doesn’t work that way. Wages are “sticky” and notoriously hard to pull back once workers attain a certain number on their pay stubs. In a large workforce, getting all employees to accept a nominal 5% pay cut will be a nightmare. Even for small firms with few workers, existing contracts, minimum wage, and competition for sought-after employees will bedevil an across-the-board pay cut. As the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance <a href="https://www.tax.ny.gov/pdf/stats/stat_pit/pit/preliminary-report-tcja-2017.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">warned</a>, if employers can't pass the full tax bill onto employees, their net labor costs go up. That drives hiring down.</p> <p>The new payroll tax doesn't exist in a vacuum, but as part of the larger tax environment, which includes high federal payroll taxes that already inhibit job and economic growth. &nbsp;</p> <p>They are the biggest taxes a large majority of Americans pay, and the most regressive, squeezing workers who don’t earn enough money to pay income tax or benefit from income tax cuts. Paying payroll taxes lowers workers’ earnings and curtails consumer spending and economic growth. Even so, Congress refused to cut them when it cut federal income and corporate taxes (though Senators Lee and Rubio tried). &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>Federal payroll taxes also distort relative prices of labor versus. non-labor inputs to business (energy, materials and land) making hiring artificially expensive and consumption artificially cheap. &nbsp;The distortion amounts to over $1 trillion a year (the amount federal payroll taxes raise), or about 5.4% of GDP.</p> <p>That’s a big, structural drag on jobs that has resulted in a big, structural (though largely hidden) overhang of joblessness. There’s a shocking fact hiding in plain sight in the rosy Bureau of Labor Statistics unemployment <a href="https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.a.htm" target="_blank" rel="noopener">charts</a>: out of 257 million non-institutionalized American adults, over 100 million don’t have jobs.</p> <p>Of those, 95 million aren’t counted as “unemployed;” they’re just considered outside the workforce. &nbsp;That’s legitimate for people who are retired, or who aren’t able or don’t chose to work. But many tens of millions of them, including millions in New York, aren’t working because they lack job opportunity, due in significant part to the corrosive effects of payroll taxation.</p> <p>To whatever extent firms adopt it, New York's new payroll tax will only compound these problems.</p> <p>Instead, payroll tax should be cut to boost jobs, both at the federal and state levels, like Colorado did. Since 2008, Colorado’s Job Growth Tax Credit has refunded state payroll tax for job creating businesses. It brought thousands of high-quality jobs to the state and grew its tax base. &nbsp;</p> <p>Revenue lost from cutting payroll taxes could be replaced with non-labor taxes on resource consumption, waste, inefficiency and pollution. That’s a tax reform approach known as <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/the-big-idea/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">payroll tax shifting</a>. According to the bipartisan group <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Get America Working!</a>, which I advise, it would reverse payroll tax’s longstanding distortions, roughly doubling the job-creating effects of cutting payroll taxes alone, creating tens of millions of jobs nationwide. In New York, non-labor taxes on consumption we want to limit could raise state revenues and fund tax relief for individuals hurt by the federal deductibility cap.</p> <p>Which non-labor taxes exactly is a topic for the next budget debate. But there is no lack of options. How about getting serious about collecting the 20% of New York sales tax that still goes unpaid? Or adopting real congestion pricing instead of the quarter-measure in this year’s budget? &nbsp;Or considering the state carbon tax designed by <a href="http://www.nyrenews.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">NYRenews</a> that would raise $7 billion annually, help meet New York’s climate goals, and stimulate renewables sector jobs? &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>New York’s new payroll tax is aimed at downstate, high-paying firms. It might or might not help a narrow band of them at the cost of undercutting job growth. But New York needs a tax policy that boosts employment statewide, including upstate. That’s why we need a tax overhaul that takes the burden off employment and puts it on harmful consumption, waste and pollution.</p> <p>***<br /> Stephen Kent is president of the public interest PR practice KentCom LLC and consults for the bipartisan employment policy group <a href="https://www.getamericaworking.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Get America Working!</a></p> <p>

***
Have an op-ed idea or submission for Gotham Gazette? Email opinion@gothamgazette.com

</p>
What's The [Data] Point? $9.5 Billion, with Andrew Rein 2018-03-18T04:00:00+00:00 2018-03-18T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7544:what-s-the-data-point-9-5-billion-with-andrew-rein Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/whats-the-data-point.jpg" alt="whats the data point" width="600" height="600" /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>What's The [Data] Point? Episode 34</strong><strong> -- $9.5 billion with Andrew Rein [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]</strong></p> <!--<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/podcast18/wtdp-w-cbrecher-120.jpg" alt="wtdp w cbrecher 120" width="440" height="120" style="display: block; margin: 10px auto;" /></p>--> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/podcast18/wtdp-rein.jpg" alt="wtdp rein" width="277" height="131" style="margin-right: 10px; float: left;" /></p> <p>$9.5 billion is the new Citizens Budget Commission estimate of the extra taxes New Yorkers will pay due to the cap on the state and local tax deduction, known as the SALT cap, enacted in the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. The number comes from a new CBC report that looks at the federal tax reform -- which has serious implications for New Yorkers -- and what the city and state should do about it.</p> <p>Andrew Rein led the writing of the report, which was influenced by a distinguished group convened by CBC right after the federal law was passed in December. Rein has had an amazing career in government, working in high-level positions at the city Department of Education and Department of Health, at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and for some major health and healthcare organization.</p> <p>Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think: Ben Max of GG (<a href="https://twitter.com/TweetBenMax" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@TweetBenMax</a>), Maria Doulis of CBC (<a href="https://twitter.com/MariaDoulis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@MariaDoulis</a>). Listen below or download wherever you get your podcasts!</p> <p><iframe src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/415712073&amp;color=%23ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_teaser=true" width="100%" height="170" frameborder="no" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <p>

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by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/whats-the-data-point.jpg" alt="whats the data point" width="600" height="600" /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>What's The [Data] Point? Episode 34</strong><strong> -- $9.5 billion with Andrew Rein [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]</strong></p> <!--<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/podcast18/wtdp-w-cbrecher-120.jpg" alt="wtdp w cbrecher 120" width="440" height="120" style="display: block; margin: 10px auto;" /></p>--> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/podcast18/wtdp-rein.jpg" alt="wtdp rein" width="277" height="131" style="margin-right: 10px; float: left;" /></p> <p>$9.5 billion is the new Citizens Budget Commission estimate of the extra taxes New Yorkers will pay due to the cap on the state and local tax deduction, known as the SALT cap, enacted in the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. The number comes from a new CBC report that looks at the federal tax reform -- which has serious implications for New Yorkers -- and what the city and state should do about it.</p> <p>Andrew Rein led the writing of the report, which was influenced by a distinguished group convened by CBC right after the federal law was passed in December. Rein has had an amazing career in government, working in high-level positions at the city Department of Education and Department of Health, at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and for some major health and healthcare organization.</p> <p>Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think: Ben Max of GG (<a href="https://twitter.com/TweetBenMax" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@TweetBenMax</a>), Maria Doulis of CBC (<a href="https://twitter.com/MariaDoulis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@MariaDoulis</a>). Listen below or download wherever you get your podcasts!</p> <p><iframe src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/415712073&amp;color=%23ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_teaser=true" width="100%" height="170" frameborder="no" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <p>

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by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
State Leaders Must Blunt Impact of Federal Tax Reform on New York Nonprofits and the People Who Rely on Us 2018-01-28T05:00:00+00:00 2018-01-28T05:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7445:state-leaders-must-blunt-impact-of-federal-tax-reform-on-new-york-nonprofits-and-the-people-who-rely-on-us Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/37749459904_8287feee00_z.jpg" alt="37749459904 8287feee00 z" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p>(photo via The Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>The recently passed federal tax law will deepen inequality and jeopardize the health and wellbeing of families and individuals across our state. This legislation penalizes New Yorkers by capping the state and local tax (SALT) deduction and will create deficits that are likely to result in catastrophic cuts to the programs they depend on. These tax “cuts” will drive up the national deficit, which will then be cynically used as a rationale for slashing investments in critical programs such as food assistance, public housing, and affordable healthcare.</p> <p>Our state leaders must take action to ensure that we can weather this storm.</p> <p>Federal aid accounts for one-third of the New York State budget and directly accounts for 8-10% of the New York City budget. The state is already facing a deficit that will be exacerbated by any federal cuts to state assistance or Medicaid spending.&nbsp; For example, homelessness is a major problem in our city and two-thirds of the New York City Housing Authority’s budget comes from federal aid. Cuts in aid to states would also have a significant impact on our children as 41% of the budget for the Administration for Children’s Services and 8% of the Department of Youth &amp; Community Development funding comes from the federal government. Lack of funds at these agencies would impact foster care, adoption services, after-school programs, and Head Start. When direct aid is cut, families and individuals will rely even more heavily on nonprofit human services organizations. Our nonprofits deliver essential programs through contracts with city and state governments that support people through every stage of life, including early child education, elder care, shelter for people experiencing homelessness, job placement, and nutrition assistance. However, these government contracts rarely cover the full cost of providing services, which has resulted in a chronically underfunded sector.</p> <p>At the same time, this federal legislation dis-incentivizes charitable giving.</p> <p>Private fundraising has been an important (but insufficient) tool for filling the deficit that comes with government contracts. The tax bill raises the standard deduction, and with that increase many people will not itemize anymore, meaning that they will not see a tax benefit in making charitable donations. According to the&nbsp;Indiana University School of Philanthropy in a <a href="https://philanthropy.iupui.edu/news-events/news-item/tax-policy-proposals-would-reduce-charitable-giving,-new-study-finds.html?id=227" target="_blank" rel="noopener">report commissioned by Independent Sector</a>, 82 percent of charitable giving comes from people who itemize their tax return, and it is estimated that charitable giving will go down by about $13 billion.</p> <p>Too many organizations are already at a breaking point. In New York City, 18% of nonprofit human services organizations are insolvent. This tax bill could push them over the edge at the exact moment when they are needed most. While we know this is a difficult budget year, given the deficit and uncertainty at the federal level, it is now more important than ever that we make sure our nonprofits are financially strong and resilient.</p> <p>We are asking the state to make investments in our workforce and our infrastructure to ensure we are strong enough to continue serving communities well into the future.&nbsp;The underfunding of human services is not a new issue, but we need the Governor to lead in this area and 1) fund the minimum wage for human services workers contracted by the State, 2) continue the Nonprofit Capital Infrastructure Fund – a highly sought after grant program that assists nonprofits in making crucial improvements to their buildings and technology, and 3) fund a wage adjustment for a workforce that has gone without a salary increase in over eight years.</p> <p>The Governor’s Executive Budget recognizes the federal threats to New York and includes an impressive agenda, which requires the close collaboration of human services providers across the state who are threatened not only by federal policies, but also by years of state policies and funding decisions that have jeopardized their ability to serve as anchors for their communities. Our organizations are dedicated to elevating the human potential of our families and communities, and we were gravely disappointed that some of our representatives did not act in the best interests of our state in passing this damaging tax legislation. However, New York now has an opportunity to be a progressive leader for the country by making investments in the human services sector. In times of challenge and uncertainty, nonprofits are our communities’ first line of defense and careful planning and adequate financial resources from the city and state are needed to protect these essential services.</p> <p>***<br /> Center for New York City Affairs<br /> Fiscal Policy Institute<br /> FPWA<br /> Human Services Council of New York<br /> United Neighborhood Houses</p> <p>

***
Have an op-ed idea or submission for Gotham Gazette? Email opinion@gothamgazette.com

</p> <p>Note: this column has been updated to correctly identify Independent Sector as the funder of the Indiana University study, not the United Way as originally written.</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2018/37749459904_8287feee00_z.jpg" alt="37749459904 8287feee00 z" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p>(photo via The Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>The recently passed federal tax law will deepen inequality and jeopardize the health and wellbeing of families and individuals across our state. This legislation penalizes New Yorkers by capping the state and local tax (SALT) deduction and will create deficits that are likely to result in catastrophic cuts to the programs they depend on. These tax “cuts” will drive up the national deficit, which will then be cynically used as a rationale for slashing investments in critical programs such as food assistance, public housing, and affordable healthcare.</p> <p>Our state leaders must take action to ensure that we can weather this storm.</p> <p>Federal aid accounts for one-third of the New York State budget and directly accounts for 8-10% of the New York City budget. The state is already facing a deficit that will be exacerbated by any federal cuts to state assistance or Medicaid spending.&nbsp; For example, homelessness is a major problem in our city and two-thirds of the New York City Housing Authority’s budget comes from federal aid. Cuts in aid to states would also have a significant impact on our children as 41% of the budget for the Administration for Children’s Services and 8% of the Department of Youth &amp; Community Development funding comes from the federal government. Lack of funds at these agencies would impact foster care, adoption services, after-school programs, and Head Start. When direct aid is cut, families and individuals will rely even more heavily on nonprofit human services organizations. Our nonprofits deliver essential programs through contracts with city and state governments that support people through every stage of life, including early child education, elder care, shelter for people experiencing homelessness, job placement, and nutrition assistance. However, these government contracts rarely cover the full cost of providing services, which has resulted in a chronically underfunded sector.</p> <p>At the same time, this federal legislation dis-incentivizes charitable giving.</p> <p>Private fundraising has been an important (but insufficient) tool for filling the deficit that comes with government contracts. The tax bill raises the standard deduction, and with that increase many people will not itemize anymore, meaning that they will not see a tax benefit in making charitable donations. According to the&nbsp;Indiana University School of Philanthropy in a <a href="https://philanthropy.iupui.edu/news-events/news-item/tax-policy-proposals-would-reduce-charitable-giving,-new-study-finds.html?id=227" target="_blank" rel="noopener">report commissioned by Independent Sector</a>, 82 percent of charitable giving comes from people who itemize their tax return, and it is estimated that charitable giving will go down by about $13 billion.</p> <p>Too many organizations are already at a breaking point. In New York City, 18% of nonprofit human services organizations are insolvent. This tax bill could push them over the edge at the exact moment when they are needed most. While we know this is a difficult budget year, given the deficit and uncertainty at the federal level, it is now more important than ever that we make sure our nonprofits are financially strong and resilient.</p> <p>We are asking the state to make investments in our workforce and our infrastructure to ensure we are strong enough to continue serving communities well into the future.&nbsp;The underfunding of human services is not a new issue, but we need the Governor to lead in this area and 1) fund the minimum wage for human services workers contracted by the State, 2) continue the Nonprofit Capital Infrastructure Fund – a highly sought after grant program that assists nonprofits in making crucial improvements to their buildings and technology, and 3) fund a wage adjustment for a workforce that has gone without a salary increase in over eight years.</p> <p>The Governor’s Executive Budget recognizes the federal threats to New York and includes an impressive agenda, which requires the close collaboration of human services providers across the state who are threatened not only by federal policies, but also by years of state policies and funding decisions that have jeopardized their ability to serve as anchors for their communities. Our organizations are dedicated to elevating the human potential of our families and communities, and we were gravely disappointed that some of our representatives did not act in the best interests of our state in passing this damaging tax legislation. However, New York now has an opportunity to be a progressive leader for the country by making investments in the human services sector. In times of challenge and uncertainty, nonprofits are our communities’ first line of defense and careful planning and adequate financial resources from the city and state are needed to protect these essential services.</p> <p>***<br /> Center for New York City Affairs<br /> Fiscal Policy Institute<br /> FPWA<br /> Human Services Council of New York<br /> United Neighborhood Houses</p> <p>

***
Have an op-ed idea or submission for Gotham Gazette? Email opinion@gothamgazette.com

</p> <p>Note: this column has been updated to correctly identify Independent Sector as the funder of the Indiana University study, not the United Way as originally written.</p>
What’s The [Data] Point? $14.3 Billion, with Robert Mujica and Dean Fuleihan 2018-01-25T05:00:00+00:00 2018-01-25T05:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7438:what-s-the-data-point-14-3-billion-with-robert-mujica-and-dean-fuleihan Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/whats-the-data-point.jpg" alt="whats the data point" width="600" height="600" /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>What's The Data Point? Episode 28</strong><strong> -- $14.3 Billion, with Robert Mujica and Dean Fuleihan [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes] </strong></p> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/podcast/robert-mujica-cbc-panel-jan23.jpg" alt="robert mujica cbc panel jan23" width="277" height="143" style="margin-right: 10px; float: left;" /></p> <p>State Budget Director Robert Mujica and New York City First Deputy Mayor Dean Fuleihan spoke at a CBC event on Wednesday, January 24 to discuss the implications of the recently-passed federal tax reform on the state and city. Mujica and Fuleihan discussed how the state and city are responding, with a great deal of budget fallout to come. Ben and Maria were there and provide an intro and brief discussion of the speeches, and this episode then brings you the full remarks from Mujica and Fuleihan, with enlightening audience Q&amp;A after each. You can also catch the video of the entire event, which included two-panel discussions, at the CBC website.</p> <p>Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think: Ben Max of GG (<a href="https://twitter.com/TweetBenMax" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@TweetBenMax</a>), Maria Doulis of CBC (<a href="https://twitter.com/MariaDoulis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@MariaDoulis</a>). Listen below or download wherever you get your podcasts!</p> <p><iframe src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/389133219&amp;color=%23ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_teaser=true" width="100%" height="170" frameborder="no" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <p>

***
by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
     

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</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/whats-the-data-point.jpg" alt="whats the data point" width="600" height="600" /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>What's The Data Point? Episode 28</strong><strong> -- $14.3 Billion, with Robert Mujica and Dean Fuleihan [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes] </strong></p> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/podcast/robert-mujica-cbc-panel-jan23.jpg" alt="robert mujica cbc panel jan23" width="277" height="143" style="margin-right: 10px; float: left;" /></p> <p>State Budget Director Robert Mujica and New York City First Deputy Mayor Dean Fuleihan spoke at a CBC event on Wednesday, January 24 to discuss the implications of the recently-passed federal tax reform on the state and city. Mujica and Fuleihan discussed how the state and city are responding, with a great deal of budget fallout to come. Ben and Maria were there and provide an intro and brief discussion of the speeches, and this episode then brings you the full remarks from Mujica and Fuleihan, with enlightening audience Q&amp;A after each. You can also catch the video of the entire event, which included two-panel discussions, at the CBC website.</p> <p>Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think: Ben Max of GG (<a href="https://twitter.com/TweetBenMax" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@TweetBenMax</a>), Maria Doulis of CBC (<a href="https://twitter.com/MariaDoulis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@MariaDoulis</a>). Listen below or download wherever you get your podcasts!</p> <p><iframe src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/389133219&amp;color=%23ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_teaser=true" width="100%" height="170" frameborder="no" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <p>

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by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
     

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State Faces Budget Deficit Ahead of Possible Gut Punch from Washington 2017-12-17T05:00:00+00:00 2017-12-17T05:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7370:state-faces-budget-deficit-ahead-of-possible-gut-punch-from-washington Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/reset_1/33773687321_7405b0322a_z.jpg" alt="Cuomo top aides budget" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p>Gov. Cuomo and top aides (photo: The Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>With the state facing a larger than usual expected budget shortfall for its next fiscal year, Governor Andrew Cuomo has been railing against the devastating impact proposed federal tax reforms would have on New York state finances.</p> <p>The controversial reform plan that is still being negotiated in Washington, D.C. would either modify or completely eliminate the ability of New Yorkers to deduct state and local taxes from federal tax burdens and likely have deep economic impact for heavily Democratic states like New York, which typically have higher state and local taxes. As of Thursday, Republicans in the House and Senate say they have agreed on a tentative deal that would cap deductions at $10,000, <a href="https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/democrats-push-stall-gop-tax-vote-so-jones-can-take-n829351" target="_blank" rel="noopener">reports NBC News</a>. While negotiations are ongoing, Congress is expected to vote on a final deal this week.</p> <p>Cuomo, a Democrat entering the final year of his second term, <a href="http://www.lohud.com/story/news/politics/politics-on-the-hudson/2017/12/05/andrew-cuomo-gop-tax-bill/108335004/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">has said</a> that the tax plan would “rape and pillage” New York at a time when the state is already faced with a $4.5 billion budget deficit -- the largest since Cuomo took office in 2011 -- and the governor has called on congressional Republicans from New York who support the tax plan to resign.</p> <p>“There is no taxpayer in this state that lives in a congressional district that won't be hurt,” said Cuomo. “Because there's only one state budget. And we start with the $4 billion deficit. You put the state at a structural disadvantage. The taxes would go up on everyone. And that's not complicated math.”</p> <p>In January, Cuomo will outline both his 2018 policy agenda in his State of the State speech as well as his executive budget proposal. The new state fiscal year begins April 1. As Cuomo and his team prepare that budget, there are troubling signs at both the state and federal levels.</p> <p>State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli has projected lower-than-expected tax revenue for the current and upcoming fiscal years. State operating funds receipts will be $1.8 billion lower than projections in the Division of Budget’s August financial plan for this fiscal year, which ends March 31, and $2.8 billion lower in 2018-19, according to a November report by DiNapoli’s office. The $4.5 billion gap may be exacerbated in the coming fiscal year by fallout from federal tax reforms.</p> <p>But, if the administration continues to adhere to Cuomo’s self-imposed 2 percent limit on annual growth in state operating spending -- and it intends to, according to a spokesperson for Cuomo’s Division of the Budget -- the deficit the state will be facing drops to $1.7 billion for next fiscal year. Federal reforms could make budget negotiations even more challenging. If New Yorkers lose most of their state and local tax deductibility, there will almost certainly be more calls for the state to cut taxes.</p> <p>Additionally, <a href="https://www.politico.com/states/new-york/albany/story/2017/12/08/feds-may-stop-paying-portion-of-states-essential-plan-139591" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Politico New York has reported</a> that another $1 billion hole may be carved into the budget if the federal government defunds a portion of the state’s Essential Plan, sometimes called the Basic Health Plan, which provides low-cost health insurance to residents earning less than twice the federal poverty level. And, in March, the state will run out funds for Children’s Health Insurance Plan (CHIP), a joint state-federal healthcare program, if it is not renewed by Congress. The state relies on $1 billion in federal CHIP funds to insure 330,000 children.</p> <p>“His problem is compounded because he'll have to go to battle over healthcare spending for the first time in history,” said E.J. McMahon, research director at the Empire Center for Public Policy, speaking of Gov. Cuomo. “It's going to be the most pressured budget since his first year in office -- easily.”</p> <p>Cuomo, who is running for reelection in 2018 and has presidential ambitions, has prided himself on passing on-time budgets and restoring fiscal order to Albany. He has <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/cuomo-warns-state-pols-pass-budget-time-no-pay-raise-article-1.3684667" target="_blank" rel="noopener">already said</a> he would link any pay raises for legislators, which are long overdue, to whether or not a budget deal is reached in a timely manner. This year’s $153-billion budget for fiscal year 2017-2018 <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/6862-cuomo-announces-153-billion-state-budget-deal" target="_blank" rel="noopener">was passed nine days late</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>To address the existing budget gap, the state must either cut spending or increase taxes. Cuomo’s office is now tasked with devising a financial plan that will not cripple agencies or end needed programs, but that will also not drive out the state’s highest income earners, whose taxes provide 40 percent of New York’s operational funding.</p> <p>It is unclear to what extent the final federal tax bill -- if passed -- <a href="http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/budget/2017/federal-tax-framework.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">will affect New York</a> and its taxpayers, but some fear it could provide additional motivation for the state’s top 1 percent to take residency elsewhere. Passage <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/n-y-millionaire-tax-hike-drop-trump-bill-passes-article-1.3690749" target="_blank" rel="noopener">would likely dash</a> any Democratic hopes for an expanded millionaire’s tax, such as the policy advocated by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.</p> <p>If millionaires and billionaires leave the state, “the burden then falls to everyone else: the middle class and the working families,” Cuomo said Wednesday in Albany at the awards ceremony for his 10 Regional Economic Development Councils.</p> <p>Federal tax policy aside, experts say the widening gap between the state’s anticipated tax revenue and receipts is unusual given what is, overall, a well-performing economy and a booming stock market. While there are certain indications that suggest state personal income tax receipts have been depressed this year by taxpayer behavior in light of possible federal tax changes, the extent of any such impact is difficult to estimate, <a href="http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/budget/2017/quick-start-report.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">according to the comptroller’s office</a>.</p> <p>There is some debate as to how to handle the upcoming budget deficit, which Cuomo has acknowledged is likely to significantly impact education funding, which may not see the typical annual increases of recent years.</p> <p>Comptroller DiNapoli has repeatedly urged that the state take steps to eliminate projected budget gaps and achieve structural budget balance, including, for example, minimizing use of one-time resources to support recurring spending and avoiding the use of administrative or accounting actions that lower the appearance of spending but do not eliminate the state’s obligation.</p> <p>These recommendations are echoed by the fiscal watchdog group Citizens Budget Commission (CBC), which <a href="https://cbcny.org/newsroom/cbc-cuomo-uses-gimmicks-low-ball-spending-growth" target="_blank" rel="noopener">has highlighted</a> how the state has created the appearance of meeting the 2 percent cap on spending increases by shifting certain personnel expenses to the capital budget.</p> <p>"Education, Medicaid, and personnel are the three things that he could target. We certainly think a lot of the economic development spending should be curtailed, but that's a slightly smaller pot," said David Friedfel, director of state studies at CBC.</p> <p>Cuomo’s administration often touts spending restraint and disputes the CBC’s characterization of its spending patterns. A spokesperson for the Division of the Budget said that the positions in question had been categorized as capital expenses because they had been associated with capital projects.</p> <p>“Governor Cuomo has been rigorous and effective in constraining State spending growth, achieving more fiscally responsible results than those of his predecessors. The current year’s budget holds spending growth to historically low levels for the seventh consecutive year while balancing the budget and lowering taxes for all New Yorkers.” said Morris Peters, of the state’s Division of the Budget.</p> <p>Legislative leaders are divided on how to approach the budget and looming deficit. Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, a Republican from Long Island, has opposed increasing taxes on high-income earners.</p> <p>"Senator Flanagan believes we must continue to strictly adhere to the two percent spending cap, which would cut the Governor's projected deficit in half, and review every single dollar the state spends," said Scott Reif, spokesperson for Flanagan, in a statement.</p> <p>Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, a Bronx Democrat, did not express much concern when speaking to reporters last week, noting that when Cuomo was first elected to office the state was forced to wrestle with a $10 billion budget deficit. “But we’re New Yorkers and we’ll find our way through it,” he said.</p> <p>Cuomo’s budget director Robert Mujica is asking agencies to keep their budgets stagnant and others are questioning whether Cuomo’s signature infrastructure projects or economic development programs should see cuts, or perhaps <a href="http://www.lohud.com/story/news/politics/politics-on-the-hudson/2017/12/07/measure-would-end-nys-film-tax-credit-program/108407074/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">a controversial tax break</a> for the film and television industry that has cost the state $31 million since 2010.</p> <p>While many have praised Cuomo for keeping the deficit relatively low since taking office, according to McMahon, the state’s fiscal situation in 2010 and next year are not necessarily comparable.</p> <p>“In 2010, there was low-hanging fruit then that is not low-hanging now,” said McMahon, noting that Cuomo’s office significantly restructured state personnel. “The first place they will go is school aid. Medicaid is more complicated because there are three levels of payment and it is controlled by federal law.”</p> <p>Education advocates pushed back on the suggestion that cutting education funding was the way to address the deficit. Instead, the state should reinstate the millionaires’ and billionaires’ tax to levels they were at before Cuomo took office and end tax loopholes for hedge-fund and private-equity billionaires, according to Billy Easton, executive director for Alliance for Quality Education of New York, a teachers-union-allied nonprofit.</p> <p>“They shouldn’t say the outcome is we’re going to increase the deficit in educational opportunity for black, brown, and low-income kids,” said Easton.</p> <p>The governor, meanwhile, has vowed to continue to challenge the federal government and members of congress who support the cuts. “I will fight this economic civil war every day that I am governor of the State of New York,” he said on Wednesday.</p> <p>

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by Rachel Silberstein, State government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

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</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/reset_1/33773687321_7405b0322a_z.jpg" alt="Cuomo top aides budget" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p>Gov. Cuomo and top aides (photo: The Governor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>With the state facing a larger than usual expected budget shortfall for its next fiscal year, Governor Andrew Cuomo has been railing against the devastating impact proposed federal tax reforms would have on New York state finances.</p> <p>The controversial reform plan that is still being negotiated in Washington, D.C. would either modify or completely eliminate the ability of New Yorkers to deduct state and local taxes from federal tax burdens and likely have deep economic impact for heavily Democratic states like New York, which typically have higher state and local taxes. As of Thursday, Republicans in the House and Senate say they have agreed on a tentative deal that would cap deductions at $10,000, <a href="https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/democrats-push-stall-gop-tax-vote-so-jones-can-take-n829351" target="_blank" rel="noopener">reports NBC News</a>. While negotiations are ongoing, Congress is expected to vote on a final deal this week.</p> <p>Cuomo, a Democrat entering the final year of his second term, <a href="http://www.lohud.com/story/news/politics/politics-on-the-hudson/2017/12/05/andrew-cuomo-gop-tax-bill/108335004/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">has said</a> that the tax plan would “rape and pillage” New York at a time when the state is already faced with a $4.5 billion budget deficit -- the largest since Cuomo took office in 2011 -- and the governor has called on congressional Republicans from New York who support the tax plan to resign.</p> <p>“There is no taxpayer in this state that lives in a congressional district that won't be hurt,” said Cuomo. “Because there's only one state budget. And we start with the $4 billion deficit. You put the state at a structural disadvantage. The taxes would go up on everyone. And that's not complicated math.”</p> <p>In January, Cuomo will outline both his 2018 policy agenda in his State of the State speech as well as his executive budget proposal. The new state fiscal year begins April 1. As Cuomo and his team prepare that budget, there are troubling signs at both the state and federal levels.</p> <p>State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli has projected lower-than-expected tax revenue for the current and upcoming fiscal years. State operating funds receipts will be $1.8 billion lower than projections in the Division of Budget’s August financial plan for this fiscal year, which ends March 31, and $2.8 billion lower in 2018-19, according to a November report by DiNapoli’s office. The $4.5 billion gap may be exacerbated in the coming fiscal year by fallout from federal tax reforms.</p> <p>But, if the administration continues to adhere to Cuomo’s self-imposed 2 percent limit on annual growth in state operating spending -- and it intends to, according to a spokesperson for Cuomo’s Division of the Budget -- the deficit the state will be facing drops to $1.7 billion for next fiscal year. Federal reforms could make budget negotiations even more challenging. If New Yorkers lose most of their state and local tax deductibility, there will almost certainly be more calls for the state to cut taxes.</p> <p>Additionally, <a href="https://www.politico.com/states/new-york/albany/story/2017/12/08/feds-may-stop-paying-portion-of-states-essential-plan-139591" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Politico New York has reported</a> that another $1 billion hole may be carved into the budget if the federal government defunds a portion of the state’s Essential Plan, sometimes called the Basic Health Plan, which provides low-cost health insurance to residents earning less than twice the federal poverty level. And, in March, the state will run out funds for Children’s Health Insurance Plan (CHIP), a joint state-federal healthcare program, if it is not renewed by Congress. The state relies on $1 billion in federal CHIP funds to insure 330,000 children.</p> <p>“His problem is compounded because he'll have to go to battle over healthcare spending for the first time in history,” said E.J. McMahon, research director at the Empire Center for Public Policy, speaking of Gov. Cuomo. “It's going to be the most pressured budget since his first year in office -- easily.”</p> <p>Cuomo, who is running for reelection in 2018 and has presidential ambitions, has prided himself on passing on-time budgets and restoring fiscal order to Albany. He has <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/cuomo-warns-state-pols-pass-budget-time-no-pay-raise-article-1.3684667" target="_blank" rel="noopener">already said</a> he would link any pay raises for legislators, which are long overdue, to whether or not a budget deal is reached in a timely manner. This year’s $153-billion budget for fiscal year 2017-2018 <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/state/6862-cuomo-announces-153-billion-state-budget-deal" target="_blank" rel="noopener">was passed nine days late</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>To address the existing budget gap, the state must either cut spending or increase taxes. Cuomo’s office is now tasked with devising a financial plan that will not cripple agencies or end needed programs, but that will also not drive out the state’s highest income earners, whose taxes provide 40 percent of New York’s operational funding.</p> <p>It is unclear to what extent the final federal tax bill -- if passed -- <a href="http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/budget/2017/federal-tax-framework.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">will affect New York</a> and its taxpayers, but some fear it could provide additional motivation for the state’s top 1 percent to take residency elsewhere. Passage <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/n-y-millionaire-tax-hike-drop-trump-bill-passes-article-1.3690749" target="_blank" rel="noopener">would likely dash</a> any Democratic hopes for an expanded millionaire’s tax, such as the policy advocated by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.</p> <p>If millionaires and billionaires leave the state, “the burden then falls to everyone else: the middle class and the working families,” Cuomo said Wednesday in Albany at the awards ceremony for his 10 Regional Economic Development Councils.</p> <p>Federal tax policy aside, experts say the widening gap between the state’s anticipated tax revenue and receipts is unusual given what is, overall, a well-performing economy and a booming stock market. While there are certain indications that suggest state personal income tax receipts have been depressed this year by taxpayer behavior in light of possible federal tax changes, the extent of any such impact is difficult to estimate, <a href="http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/budget/2017/quick-start-report.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener">according to the comptroller’s office</a>.</p> <p>There is some debate as to how to handle the upcoming budget deficit, which Cuomo has acknowledged is likely to significantly impact education funding, which may not see the typical annual increases of recent years.</p> <p>Comptroller DiNapoli has repeatedly urged that the state take steps to eliminate projected budget gaps and achieve structural budget balance, including, for example, minimizing use of one-time resources to support recurring spending and avoiding the use of administrative or accounting actions that lower the appearance of spending but do not eliminate the state’s obligation.</p> <p>These recommendations are echoed by the fiscal watchdog group Citizens Budget Commission (CBC), which <a href="https://cbcny.org/newsroom/cbc-cuomo-uses-gimmicks-low-ball-spending-growth" target="_blank" rel="noopener">has highlighted</a> how the state has created the appearance of meeting the 2 percent cap on spending increases by shifting certain personnel expenses to the capital budget.</p> <p>"Education, Medicaid, and personnel are the three things that he could target. We certainly think a lot of the economic development spending should be curtailed, but that's a slightly smaller pot," said David Friedfel, director of state studies at CBC.</p> <p>Cuomo’s administration often touts spending restraint and disputes the CBC’s characterization of its spending patterns. A spokesperson for the Division of the Budget said that the positions in question had been categorized as capital expenses because they had been associated with capital projects.</p> <p>“Governor Cuomo has been rigorous and effective in constraining State spending growth, achieving more fiscally responsible results than those of his predecessors. The current year’s budget holds spending growth to historically low levels for the seventh consecutive year while balancing the budget and lowering taxes for all New Yorkers.” said Morris Peters, of the state’s Division of the Budget.</p> <p>Legislative leaders are divided on how to approach the budget and looming deficit. Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, a Republican from Long Island, has opposed increasing taxes on high-income earners.</p> <p>"Senator Flanagan believes we must continue to strictly adhere to the two percent spending cap, which would cut the Governor's projected deficit in half, and review every single dollar the state spends," said Scott Reif, spokesperson for Flanagan, in a statement.</p> <p>Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, a Bronx Democrat, did not express much concern when speaking to reporters last week, noting that when Cuomo was first elected to office the state was forced to wrestle with a $10 billion budget deficit. “But we’re New Yorkers and we’ll find our way through it,” he said.</p> <p>Cuomo’s budget director Robert Mujica is asking agencies to keep their budgets stagnant and others are questioning whether Cuomo’s signature infrastructure projects or economic development programs should see cuts, or perhaps <a href="http://www.lohud.com/story/news/politics/politics-on-the-hudson/2017/12/07/measure-would-end-nys-film-tax-credit-program/108407074/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">a controversial tax break</a> for the film and television industry that has cost the state $31 million since 2010.</p> <p>While many have praised Cuomo for keeping the deficit relatively low since taking office, according to McMahon, the state’s fiscal situation in 2010 and next year are not necessarily comparable.</p> <p>“In 2010, there was low-hanging fruit then that is not low-hanging now,” said McMahon, noting that Cuomo’s office significantly restructured state personnel. “The first place they will go is school aid. Medicaid is more complicated because there are three levels of payment and it is controlled by federal law.”</p> <p>Education advocates pushed back on the suggestion that cutting education funding was the way to address the deficit. Instead, the state should reinstate the millionaires’ and billionaires’ tax to levels they were at before Cuomo took office and end tax loopholes for hedge-fund and private-equity billionaires, according to Billy Easton, executive director for Alliance for Quality Education of New York, a teachers-union-allied nonprofit.</p> <p>“They shouldn’t say the outcome is we’re going to increase the deficit in educational opportunity for black, brown, and low-income kids,” said Easton.</p> <p>The governor, meanwhile, has vowed to continue to challenge the federal government and members of congress who support the cuts. “I will fight this economic civil war every day that I am governor of the State of New York,” he said on Wednesday.</p> <p>

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by Rachel Silberstein, State government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
Federal Tax Reform Could Turn City’s Housing Crisis into a Humanitarian Disaster 2017-12-11T05:00:00+00:00 2017-12-11T05:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7364:federal-tax-reform-could-turn-city-s-housing-crisis-into-a-humanitarian-disaster Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/picture_the_homeless_vacant_lots.jpg" alt="picture the homeless vacant lots" width="600px" /></p> <p>protesting unused vacant property (via @pthny)</p> <hr /> <p>In New York City, the demand for affordable housing<a href="https://www1.nyc.gov/site/housing/about/problem.page" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> far exceeds supply</a>.<a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/hra/downloads/pdf/news/publications/Turning_the_Tide_on_Homelessness.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> Seventy percent</a> of the city’s homeless shelter residents are families. Families who should be in homes.</p> <p>Now, as the United States House of Representatives and Senate look to the conference committee to reconcile their respective<a href="https://www.novoco.com/comparison-house-and-senate-finance-committee-approved-tax-reform-bills" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> tax reform bills</a>, the housing crisis that began in the 1980s will become a catastrophe unless we, the people, intervene.</p> <p>On paper, both the House and Senate plans retain the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) — which funds<a href="https://www.reis.com/cre-news-and-resources/bisnow-lihtc-program-now-funds-about-90-percent-of-us-affordable-housing-projects" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> 90 percent</a> of the nation’s affordable housing developments. However, the House tax bill<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> eliminates tax-exempt private activity bonds</a> (PABs) that fund half of all LIHTC projects.</p> <p>Although the<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-tax-reform-bill-would-reduce-affordable-rental-housing-production-nearly-300000-homes" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> Senate bill</a> retains PABs, both bills cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent, dramatically<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> reducing the value of tax credits</a> that fund the remainder of LIHTC projects.</p> <p>Also included in the Senate bill is an amendment that imposes what amounts to an<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-approves-tax-cuts-and-jobs-act-some-changes-committee-passed-version" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> international alternative minimum tax</a> on any corporation with significant foreign operations. As a result, some large corporate investors might be deterred from claiming the LIHTC.</p> <p>No matter how the reconciliation pans out, it is clear that, if passed, federal tax reform will devastate<a href="https://www1.nyc.gov/site/housing/about/problem.page" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> more than a million low-income New Yorkers</a> searching for homes. And this isn’t the first federal policy to squeeze out affordable housing.</p> <p>Under President Reagan, government spending on subsidized housing was slashed from<a href="http://www.sfweekly.com/news/the-great-eliminator-how-ronald-reagan-made-homelessness-permanent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> $26 billion to $8 billion</a>, contributing to a<a href="https://www.thenation.com/article/reagans-real-legacy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> dramatic spike in homelessness</a>. As a private sector solution, Reagan signed the LIHTC into law in 1986 to counterbalance the cuts to direct federal spending.</p> <p>LIHTC’s market-based answer to affordable housing was<a href="https://ncsha.org/advocacy-issues/housing-credit" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> successful enough</a> that subsequent administrations maintained the program while<a href="http://www.sfweekly.com/news/the-great-eliminator-how-ronald-reagan-made-homelessness-permanent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> continuing to whittle away at Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds</a>. LIHTC became the best — or rather, only — hope for Americans in need. But in cities like New York, LIHTC wasn’t enough to mitigate the surge and suffering of homelessness.</p> <p>Although<a href="http://www.nychdc.com/content/pdf/ProjectAdvertisements/NY%20LIHTC%20and%20Homelessness%20Report%20final.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> LIHTC helped develop or preserve approximately 122,000 affordable properties</a> in New York City from 1994 to 2014, the city still endured a<a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/hra/downloads/pdf/news/publications/Turning_the_Tide_on_Homelessness.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> net loss of 150,000</a> rent stabilized apartments, leaving tens of thousands of New Yorkers with nowhere to go but the street or a shelter. &nbsp;</p> <p>Mayor Bill de Blasio responded to this crisis with a<a href="https://www.amny.com/news/politics/affordable-housing-plan-1.14990989" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> pledge to add 100,000 affordable units</a> by 2020. But experts at Novogradac &amp; Company estimate that, if the House tax bill passes, that number could<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> fall by two thirds</a>.</p> <p>Even if PABs are retained in the reconciled bill, the corporate tax rate reduction alone will result in the loss of around<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-tax-reform-bill-would-reduce-affordable-rental-housing-production-nearly-300000-homes" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> 300,000 affordable units</a> nationally.</p> <p>By squeezing the funding pipeline for affordable housing tighter than ever before, both bills crush the supply of affordable housing and the low-income families that rely on it.</p> <p>This cannot happen — not on our watch, not in our city, and not in our country. This isn’t a partisan issue, it’s a moral one. We have a duty, to our city and our neighbors, to speak out against any provision that would threaten the supply of affordable housing at this most critical time in our country’s history.</p> <p>Although the House and Senate have approved their respective bills, the final version has yet to be agreed upon. Now is the time to urge our representatives to reject any final bill that removes the tax-exempt status of PABs and cuts the corporate tax rate.</p> <p>***<br /> George McDonald is founder and president of The Doe Fund. On Twitter at <a href="https://twitter.com/georgetmcdonald?lang=en" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@GeorgeTMcDonald</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/thedoefund?lang=en" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@TheDoeFund</a>.</p> <p>

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</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/picture_the_homeless_vacant_lots.jpg" alt="picture the homeless vacant lots" width="600px" /></p> <p>protesting unused vacant property (via @pthny)</p> <hr /> <p>In New York City, the demand for affordable housing<a href="https://www1.nyc.gov/site/housing/about/problem.page" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> far exceeds supply</a>.<a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/hra/downloads/pdf/news/publications/Turning_the_Tide_on_Homelessness.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> Seventy percent</a> of the city’s homeless shelter residents are families. Families who should be in homes.</p> <p>Now, as the United States House of Representatives and Senate look to the conference committee to reconcile their respective<a href="https://www.novoco.com/comparison-house-and-senate-finance-committee-approved-tax-reform-bills" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> tax reform bills</a>, the housing crisis that began in the 1980s will become a catastrophe unless we, the people, intervene.</p> <p>On paper, both the House and Senate plans retain the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) — which funds<a href="https://www.reis.com/cre-news-and-resources/bisnow-lihtc-program-now-funds-about-90-percent-of-us-affordable-housing-projects" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> 90 percent</a> of the nation’s affordable housing developments. However, the House tax bill<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> eliminates tax-exempt private activity bonds</a> (PABs) that fund half of all LIHTC projects.</p> <p>Although the<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-tax-reform-bill-would-reduce-affordable-rental-housing-production-nearly-300000-homes" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> Senate bill</a> retains PABs, both bills cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent, dramatically<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> reducing the value of tax credits</a> that fund the remainder of LIHTC projects.</p> <p>Also included in the Senate bill is an amendment that imposes what amounts to an<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-approves-tax-cuts-and-jobs-act-some-changes-committee-passed-version" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> international alternative minimum tax</a> on any corporation with significant foreign operations. As a result, some large corporate investors might be deterred from claiming the LIHTC.</p> <p>No matter how the reconciliation pans out, it is clear that, if passed, federal tax reform will devastate<a href="https://www1.nyc.gov/site/housing/about/problem.page" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> more than a million low-income New Yorkers</a> searching for homes. And this isn’t the first federal policy to squeeze out affordable housing.</p> <p>Under President Reagan, government spending on subsidized housing was slashed from<a href="http://www.sfweekly.com/news/the-great-eliminator-how-ronald-reagan-made-homelessness-permanent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> $26 billion to $8 billion</a>, contributing to a<a href="https://www.thenation.com/article/reagans-real-legacy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> dramatic spike in homelessness</a>. As a private sector solution, Reagan signed the LIHTC into law in 1986 to counterbalance the cuts to direct federal spending.</p> <p>LIHTC’s market-based answer to affordable housing was<a href="https://ncsha.org/advocacy-issues/housing-credit" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> successful enough</a> that subsequent administrations maintained the program while<a href="http://www.sfweekly.com/news/the-great-eliminator-how-ronald-reagan-made-homelessness-permanent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> continuing to whittle away at Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds</a>. LIHTC became the best — or rather, only — hope for Americans in need. But in cities like New York, LIHTC wasn’t enough to mitigate the surge and suffering of homelessness.</p> <p>Although<a href="http://www.nychdc.com/content/pdf/ProjectAdvertisements/NY%20LIHTC%20and%20Homelessness%20Report%20final.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> LIHTC helped develop or preserve approximately 122,000 affordable properties</a> in New York City from 1994 to 2014, the city still endured a<a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/hra/downloads/pdf/news/publications/Turning_the_Tide_on_Homelessness.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> net loss of 150,000</a> rent stabilized apartments, leaving tens of thousands of New Yorkers with nowhere to go but the street or a shelter. &nbsp;</p> <p>Mayor Bill de Blasio responded to this crisis with a<a href="https://www.amny.com/news/politics/affordable-housing-plan-1.14990989" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> pledge to add 100,000 affordable units</a> by 2020. But experts at Novogradac &amp; Company estimate that, if the House tax bill passes, that number could<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/tax-reform-bill-would-eliminate-future-supply-nearly-1-million-affordable-rental-housing-units" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> fall by two thirds</a>.</p> <p>Even if PABs are retained in the reconciled bill, the corporate tax rate reduction alone will result in the loss of around<a href="https://www.novoco.com/notes-from-novogradac/senate-tax-reform-bill-would-reduce-affordable-rental-housing-production-nearly-300000-homes" target="_blank" rel="noopener"> 300,000 affordable units</a> nationally.</p> <p>By squeezing the funding pipeline for affordable housing tighter than ever before, both bills crush the supply of affordable housing and the low-income families that rely on it.</p> <p>This cannot happen — not on our watch, not in our city, and not in our country. This isn’t a partisan issue, it’s a moral one. We have a duty, to our city and our neighbors, to speak out against any provision that would threaten the supply of affordable housing at this most critical time in our country’s history.</p> <p>Although the House and Senate have approved their respective bills, the final version has yet to be agreed upon. Now is the time to urge our representatives to reject any final bill that removes the tax-exempt status of PABs and cuts the corporate tax rate.</p> <p>***<br /> George McDonald is founder and president of The Doe Fund. On Twitter at <a href="https://twitter.com/georgetmcdonald?lang=en" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@GeorgeTMcDonald</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/thedoefund?lang=en" target="_blank" rel="noopener">@TheDoeFund</a>.</p> <p>

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</p>
City Council Members, with Notable Exceptions, Send Letter to MTA Supporting De Blasio Tax Plan 2017-10-26T04:00:00+00:00 2017-10-26T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=7278:city-council-members-with-notable-exceptions-send-letter-to-mta-supporting-de-blasio-tax-plan Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/reset_1/35262821353_c6f7cf023c_z.jpg" alt="de Blasio subway tax" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p>De Blasio on the train (Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>Amid an ongoing feud -- between the Mayor Bill de Blasio on one side and Governor Andrew Cuomo and the MTA on the other -- over funding for mass transit infrastructure in New York City, 27 New York City Council Members on Thursday announced support for the mayor’s proposal to tax wealthy New Yorkers to raise money for subway and bus improvements.</p> <p>The mayor has pitched a tax increase on the top-most earners in the city as part of his “Fair Fix” plan, which would raise about $700 million in 2018 from 32,000 city residents, according to the de Blasio administration. That figure would rise to $820 million annually by 2022, according to city estimates, by increasing the highest income tax rate from 3.876 percent to 4.41 percent for individuals making more than $500,000 a year and couples making more than $1 million.</p> <p>The revenue would be used for the subways and buses, but also to fund the “fair fares” plan to subsidize half-priced MetroCards for the city’s lowest-income residents, something de Blasio has expressed support for in principle, but refused to fund out of city budget money while saying it should be the responsibility of the state-controlled MTA.</p> <p>More than half the 51-member City Council, including five of the seven members running to be the next speaker, backed the plan in a letter to MTA Chair Joe Lhota and the MTA board, on which the New York City Mayor has four appointees of the 14 seats (the Governor has a plurality of six and also appoints the chair). However, two leading speaker contenders did not sign, nor did current Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, though she has expressed support for de Blasio’s plan.</p> <p>“It’s called the Fair Fix because rather than ask working New Yorkers already feeling the pressure of rising fares and bad service to foot the bill on their own, we are asking the millionaires and billionaires in our city to chip in a little extra to help move our transit system that helps make them some of the wealthiest people in the world,” reads the letter, which was sent out by Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer’s office. “This plan is the right approach and it must advance without delay.”</p> <p>“We need more cost-effective capital construction for the MTA and must think of ways to generate more revenue for the exclusive purpose of bringing our mass transit system to the 21st-century,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, chair of the transportation committee, in a statement Thursday. “I am confident that Fair Fix, along with other plans proposed at the city and state levels, would raise desperately needed funds for a sustainable plan of improvements.”</p> <p>Of the new revenue raised from the mayor’s proposal, $500 million would be dedicated each year to capital infrastructure improvements and the city estimates that it would allow them to borrow about $8 billion more for upgrades. At least $250 million would help provide half-price MetroCards for 800,000 low-income New Yorkers, which is based on the “Fair Fares” proposal created by a group of transit advocates who insisted that the city fund those MetroCards in the budget this year. De Blasio refused to add Fair Fares to the budget, even eschewing a smaller pilot proposal made by the City Council, but included it later in his tax increase proposal, insisting throughout that the state should bear the burden.</p> <p>Any tax increases are seen as unlikely to move through Albany, especially during a state-level election year, which 2018 is, due to opposition from both Gov. Cuomo, a Democrat, and the Republican-controlled state Senate. De Blasio and all 27 signers of the new letter are Democrats.</p> <p>The 27 Council Members who support that notion include most of the Council’s Progressive Caucus, with a few notable exceptions. Speaker Mark-Viverito did not sign the letter, nor did Council Members Corey Johnson and Mark Levine, both of whom are prominent speaker candidates. Robin Levine, a spokesperson for Mark-Viverito, said in an email, “The MTA is in need of immediate fixing and the Speaker has long supported both the millionaire’s and commuter taxes.”</p> <p>A spokesperson for Council Member Johnson did not return a request for comment on why he did not sign the letter.</p> <p>“I'm fully supportive of the millionaires tax as I believe we desperately need new revenue for the transportation system, which is also why I support congestion pricing,” said Levine in an email. “I didn't sign on to the letter because Joe Lhota and the MTA board don't control the income tax rate.”</p> <p>De Blasio has been an ardent opponent of a congestion pricing scheme, some version of which Cuomo has indicated he will offer in January when he unveils his executive budget proposal and the state’s legislative session begins. Congestion pricing typically includes mechanisms to raise money for mass transit while altering the city’s toll system and implementing measures to reduce street congestion in Manhattan.</p> <p>The fate of de Blasio’s proposal is largely uncertain. It would have to be approved by the state Legislature, and Republicans who control the state Senate and have an acrimonious relationship with the progressive Democratic mayor have already thrown cold water on any tax increases. At the same time, the governor and MTA’s Lhota continue to pressure de Blasio to fund half of a $836 million emergency action plan for the city’s subways that Lhota unveiled shortly after retaking the helm at the MTA at a crisis point in subway service. De Blasio has refused, citing money that Cuomo has raided from the MTA and offering his tax plan.</p> <p>Cuomo has set up a task force to explore congestion pricing but did not initially invite de Blasio, or any other elected official from New York City, to join it. Cuomo made an invitation to de Blasio during a recent NY1 interview, which de Blasio shot down, with his spokesperson calling the task force a “charade” and the mayor saying it is set up for the governor’s own purposes. De Blasio has consistently rejected congestion pricing as a “regressive tax” that would hurt outer borough commuters, despite the facts that while the most prominent plan, Move New York, would institute tolls on the now-free East River bridges, it would also lower tolls on some bridges, and that car owners tend to be wealthier than those who solely rely on public transportation.</p> <p>“New Yorkers want real solutions and that's why they're rallying around the mayor's plan to ask the wealthiest 1% to chip in a little extra," said Austin Finan, a mayoral spokesman, in a statement when asked for a response to the City Council members’ letter.</p> <p>

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by Samar Khurshid, City government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/reset_1/35262821353_c6f7cf023c_z.jpg" alt="de Blasio subway tax" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p>De Blasio on the train (Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)</p> <hr /> <p>Amid an ongoing feud -- between the Mayor Bill de Blasio on one side and Governor Andrew Cuomo and the MTA on the other -- over funding for mass transit infrastructure in New York City, 27 New York City Council Members on Thursday announced support for the mayor’s proposal to tax wealthy New Yorkers to raise money for subway and bus improvements.</p> <p>The mayor has pitched a tax increase on the top-most earners in the city as part of his “Fair Fix” plan, which would raise about $700 million in 2018 from 32,000 city residents, according to the de Blasio administration. That figure would rise to $820 million annually by 2022, according to city estimates, by increasing the highest income tax rate from 3.876 percent to 4.41 percent for individuals making more than $500,000 a year and couples making more than $1 million.</p> <p>The revenue would be used for the subways and buses, but also to fund the “fair fares” plan to subsidize half-priced MetroCards for the city’s lowest-income residents, something de Blasio has expressed support for in principle, but refused to fund out of city budget money while saying it should be the responsibility of the state-controlled MTA.</p> <p>More than half the 51-member City Council, including five of the seven members running to be the next speaker, backed the plan in a letter to MTA Chair Joe Lhota and the MTA board, on which the New York City Mayor has four appointees of the 14 seats (the Governor has a plurality of six and also appoints the chair). However, two leading speaker contenders did not sign, nor did current Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, though she has expressed support for de Blasio’s plan.</p> <p>“It’s called the Fair Fix because rather than ask working New Yorkers already feeling the pressure of rising fares and bad service to foot the bill on their own, we are asking the millionaires and billionaires in our city to chip in a little extra to help move our transit system that helps make them some of the wealthiest people in the world,” reads the letter, which was sent out by Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer’s office. “This plan is the right approach and it must advance without delay.”</p> <p>“We need more cost-effective capital construction for the MTA and must think of ways to generate more revenue for the exclusive purpose of bringing our mass transit system to the 21st-century,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, chair of the transportation committee, in a statement Thursday. “I am confident that Fair Fix, along with other plans proposed at the city and state levels, would raise desperately needed funds for a sustainable plan of improvements.”</p> <p>Of the new revenue raised from the mayor’s proposal, $500 million would be dedicated each year to capital infrastructure improvements and the city estimates that it would allow them to borrow about $8 billion more for upgrades. At least $250 million would help provide half-price MetroCards for 800,000 low-income New Yorkers, which is based on the “Fair Fares” proposal created by a group of transit advocates who insisted that the city fund those MetroCards in the budget this year. De Blasio refused to add Fair Fares to the budget, even eschewing a smaller pilot proposal made by the City Council, but included it later in his tax increase proposal, insisting throughout that the state should bear the burden.</p> <p>Any tax increases are seen as unlikely to move through Albany, especially during a state-level election year, which 2018 is, due to opposition from both Gov. Cuomo, a Democrat, and the Republican-controlled state Senate. De Blasio and all 27 signers of the new letter are Democrats.</p> <p>The 27 Council Members who support that notion include most of the Council’s Progressive Caucus, with a few notable exceptions. Speaker Mark-Viverito did not sign the letter, nor did Council Members Corey Johnson and Mark Levine, both of whom are prominent speaker candidates. Robin Levine, a spokesperson for Mark-Viverito, said in an email, “The MTA is in need of immediate fixing and the Speaker has long supported both the millionaire’s and commuter taxes.”</p> <p>A spokesperson for Council Member Johnson did not return a request for comment on why he did not sign the letter.</p> <p>“I'm fully supportive of the millionaires tax as I believe we desperately need new revenue for the transportation system, which is also why I support congestion pricing,” said Levine in an email. “I didn't sign on to the letter because Joe Lhota and the MTA board don't control the income tax rate.”</p> <p>De Blasio has been an ardent opponent of a congestion pricing scheme, some version of which Cuomo has indicated he will offer in January when he unveils his executive budget proposal and the state’s legislative session begins. Congestion pricing typically includes mechanisms to raise money for mass transit while altering the city’s toll system and implementing measures to reduce street congestion in Manhattan.</p> <p>The fate of de Blasio’s proposal is largely uncertain. It would have to be approved by the state Legislature, and Republicans who control the state Senate and have an acrimonious relationship with the progressive Democratic mayor have already thrown cold water on any tax increases. At the same time, the governor and MTA’s Lhota continue to pressure de Blasio to fund half of a $836 million emergency action plan for the city’s subways that Lhota unveiled shortly after retaking the helm at the MTA at a crisis point in subway service. De Blasio has refused, citing money that Cuomo has raided from the MTA and offering his tax plan.</p> <p>Cuomo has set up a task force to explore congestion pricing but did not initially invite de Blasio, or any other elected official from New York City, to join it. Cuomo made an invitation to de Blasio during a recent NY1 interview, which de Blasio shot down, with his spokesperson calling the task force a “charade” and the mayor saying it is set up for the governor’s own purposes. De Blasio has consistently rejected congestion pricing as a “regressive tax” that would hurt outer borough commuters, despite the facts that while the most prominent plan, Move New York, would institute tolls on the now-free East River bridges, it would also lower tolls on some bridges, and that car owners tend to be wealthier than those who solely rely on public transportation.</p> <p>“New Yorkers want real solutions and that's why they're rallying around the mayor's plan to ask the wealthiest 1% to chip in a little extra," said Austin Finan, a mayoral spokesman, in a statement when asked for a response to the City Council members’ letter.</p> <p>

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by Samar Khurshid, City government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
The Tax Day March Is Not Just About Trump’s Taxes 2017-04-13T04:00:00+00:00 2017-04-13T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=6870:the-tax-day-march-is-not-just-about-trump-s-taxes Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/womens_march.jpg" alt="womens march" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p dir="ltr">(<a href="https://twitter.com/womensmarch/status/836777543596396545" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">photo: @womensmarch</a>)</p> <hr /> <p dir="ltr">On Tax Day, hundreds of thousands of protesters will take to the streets to demand President Trump release his tax returns and hold the wealthy accountable for taxes that the rest of us pay every year.</p> <p dir="ltr">Our group, the<a href="https://populardemocracy.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Center for Popular Democracy</a>, will be among those calling for a tax system that ensures everyone contributes their fair share to our country so that all Americans, regardless of socioeconomic status, have the opportunity to reach their highest potential. We cannot allow Wall Street banks and billionaires to use their wealth and power to repeatedly shortchange us.</p> <p dir="ltr">The nine largest banks in America, for example, have used loopholes and other tax dodging schemes to lower their tax rate from the official rate of 35 percent to just 18.6 percent, a lower rate than what millions of middle class families pay. That tax dodge alone has allowed the banks to avoid paying some $80 billion in taxes between 2008 and<a href="http://inequality.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Republican-Tax-Giveaways-to-Wall-Street-April-11.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> 2015</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">These figures do not include offshore tax havens, where Fortune 500 companies have stashed $2.6 trillion in profits on which they owe $767 billion in taxes. That's enough to pay the cost of Bernie Sanders' debt-free college plan and more. They also do not account for the taxes dodged using the "carried interest" loophole which makes it possible for one hedge fund manager who makes $4.6 million per day to pay a tax rate lower than what a teacher or firefighter might pay.</p> <p dir="ltr">These billions of dollars could have been used to fund public programs that provide critical services that millions of New Yorkers rely on, like public housing, healthcare, and education.</p> <p dir="ltr">In fact, even some of New York’s wealthiest residents agree. In March,<a href="http://nypost.com/2017/03/21/rich-new-yorkers-ask-cuomo-to-raise-their-taxes/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> 80 wealthy</a> New Yorkers wrote to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, urging him to increase taxes on the rich to provide infrastructure services that benefit all New Yorkers. “We need to invest in pathways out of poverty and up the economic ladder for all of our fellow citizens, including strong public education from pre-K to college. And, we need to invest in the fragile bridges, tunnels, waterlines, public buildings, and roads that we all depend on” they wrote.</p> <p dir="ltr">The state also recently passed its state budget which included a two-year extension on the “millionaires’ tax” expected to “offset the state’s $3.5 billion deficit and fund income tax cuts for people making under $300,000,” as reported by<a href="http://fortune.com/2017/04/10/new-york-budget-college-tuition/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Reuters</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">New York should lead the way forward by making the “millionaires’ tax” permanent and closing loopholes that have allowed Trump’s donors and the wealthiest executives on Wall Street to avoid paying huge sums in taxes in recent years.</p> <p dir="ltr">Most Americans know that our current tax laws are steeply slanted in favor of the rich and powerful – and they are not happy about it. A Pew Research poll<a href="http://www.people-press.org/2015/03/19/federal-tax-system-seen-in-need-of-overhaul/"> found</a> that roughly two-thirds (64 percent) of Americans “are bothered a lot by the feeling that some corporations aren’t paying what’s fair in federal taxes, and 61 percent say the same about some wealthy people.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Trump has his own<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/02/us/politics/donald-trump-taxes.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> sordid</a> history with the IRS. The New York Times obtained documents showing Trump reported a staggering loss of nearly one billion dollars in 1995, which could have allowed him to legally avoid paying federal taxes for 18 years.</p> <p dir="ltr">In 1789 Benjamin Franklin wrote, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Almost three centuries later, only one of these things is certain and the other is unfairly avoided by those with wealth and privilege.</p> <p dir="ltr">Unlike Donald Trump, most Americans don't mind paying their taxes. What they object to is letting the rich and powerful avoid paying theirs. It’s time for the one percent to step up to the plate.</p> <p dir="ltr">***<br />Tony Perlstein is Deputy Director of Campaigns for the <a href="https://populardemocracy.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Center for Popular Democracy</a>. On Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/popdemoc" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@popdemoc</a>.</p> <p>

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</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/womens_march.jpg" alt="womens march" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p dir="ltr">(<a href="https://twitter.com/womensmarch/status/836777543596396545" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">photo: @womensmarch</a>)</p> <hr /> <p dir="ltr">On Tax Day, hundreds of thousands of protesters will take to the streets to demand President Trump release his tax returns and hold the wealthy accountable for taxes that the rest of us pay every year.</p> <p dir="ltr">Our group, the<a href="https://populardemocracy.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Center for Popular Democracy</a>, will be among those calling for a tax system that ensures everyone contributes their fair share to our country so that all Americans, regardless of socioeconomic status, have the opportunity to reach their highest potential. We cannot allow Wall Street banks and billionaires to use their wealth and power to repeatedly shortchange us.</p> <p dir="ltr">The nine largest banks in America, for example, have used loopholes and other tax dodging schemes to lower their tax rate from the official rate of 35 percent to just 18.6 percent, a lower rate than what millions of middle class families pay. That tax dodge alone has allowed the banks to avoid paying some $80 billion in taxes between 2008 and<a href="http://inequality.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Republican-Tax-Giveaways-to-Wall-Street-April-11.pdf" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> 2015</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">These figures do not include offshore tax havens, where Fortune 500 companies have stashed $2.6 trillion in profits on which they owe $767 billion in taxes. That's enough to pay the cost of Bernie Sanders' debt-free college plan and more. They also do not account for the taxes dodged using the "carried interest" loophole which makes it possible for one hedge fund manager who makes $4.6 million per day to pay a tax rate lower than what a teacher or firefighter might pay.</p> <p dir="ltr">These billions of dollars could have been used to fund public programs that provide critical services that millions of New Yorkers rely on, like public housing, healthcare, and education.</p> <p dir="ltr">In fact, even some of New York’s wealthiest residents agree. In March,<a href="http://nypost.com/2017/03/21/rich-new-yorkers-ask-cuomo-to-raise-their-taxes/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> 80 wealthy</a> New Yorkers wrote to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, urging him to increase taxes on the rich to provide infrastructure services that benefit all New Yorkers. “We need to invest in pathways out of poverty and up the economic ladder for all of our fellow citizens, including strong public education from pre-K to college. And, we need to invest in the fragile bridges, tunnels, waterlines, public buildings, and roads that we all depend on” they wrote.</p> <p dir="ltr">The state also recently passed its state budget which included a two-year extension on the “millionaires’ tax” expected to “offset the state’s $3.5 billion deficit and fund income tax cuts for people making under $300,000,” as reported by<a href="http://fortune.com/2017/04/10/new-york-budget-college-tuition/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Reuters</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">New York should lead the way forward by making the “millionaires’ tax” permanent and closing loopholes that have allowed Trump’s donors and the wealthiest executives on Wall Street to avoid paying huge sums in taxes in recent years.</p> <p dir="ltr">Most Americans know that our current tax laws are steeply slanted in favor of the rich and powerful – and they are not happy about it. A Pew Research poll<a href="http://www.people-press.org/2015/03/19/federal-tax-system-seen-in-need-of-overhaul/"> found</a> that roughly two-thirds (64 percent) of Americans “are bothered a lot by the feeling that some corporations aren’t paying what’s fair in federal taxes, and 61 percent say the same about some wealthy people.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Trump has his own<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/02/us/politics/donald-trump-taxes.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> sordid</a> history with the IRS. The New York Times obtained documents showing Trump reported a staggering loss of nearly one billion dollars in 1995, which could have allowed him to legally avoid paying federal taxes for 18 years.</p> <p dir="ltr">In 1789 Benjamin Franklin wrote, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Almost three centuries later, only one of these things is certain and the other is unfairly avoided by those with wealth and privilege.</p> <p dir="ltr">Unlike Donald Trump, most Americans don't mind paying their taxes. What they object to is letting the rich and powerful avoid paying theirs. It’s time for the one percent to step up to the plate.</p> <p dir="ltr">***<br />Tony Perlstein is Deputy Director of Campaigns for the <a href="https://populardemocracy.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Center for Popular Democracy</a>. On Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/popdemoc" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">@popdemoc</a>.</p> <p>

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On the Issues: Presidential Candidate Comparison 2016-10-31T04:00:00+00:00 2016-10-31T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=6601:presidential-candidate-comparison Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2016/election-candidates.png" alt="election candidates" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/#fullissue" target="_self" style="background-color: #02619c; border-radius: 25px; color: #fff; cursor: pointer; font-weight: bolder; margin: 2px; padding: 5px;" title="Click here to see the full list">Click here to see the full list</a></strong></p> <p> </p> <section> <article> <a id="fullissue"></a> <div id="hidden1" class="issues-list"> <h1>Vice President</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Tim Kaine of Virginia. U.S. Senator, former Governor of Virginia, former Mayor of Richmond.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Mike Pence of Indiana. Governor of Indiana, former member of the United States House of Represenatatives, where he was a leader of the Tea Party movement.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">William Weld of Massachusetts. Former Republican governor of Massachusetts 1991, former U.S. Senate candidate.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Ajamu Baraka of Georgia. Human rights activist, founding executive director of the U.S. Human Rights Network.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Bio</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Hillary Clinton, born in 1947, is most notable for serving as First Lady of the United States (1993-2001), a United States Senator from New York (2001-2009), and the United States Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013. She's known for, among other things, her push for national health care reform in 1993-1994 as First Lady.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Donald Trump, born in 1946, is a businessman, real estate mogul, and television personality. He has built further on the buisness empire started by his father and made a national name for his real estate and casino businesses, and as the host of The Apprentice.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Gary Johnson, born in 1953, founded what became one of the largest construction companies in New Mexico. Former governor of New Mexico, winning his longshot 1994 bid, serving two terms. Has long-favored small government. Also ran for President as the Libertarian Party nominee in 2012. He got 0.99% of the national vote that year.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Jill Stein, born in 1950, is a physician and activist whose biggest focus has been environmental and health issues. She was the Green Party Candidate for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002 and 2010, and the Green Party Candidate for President in 2012. She received 0.36% of the national vote that year.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Campaign Websites</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span class="header"></span><span id="hc-positions"><a href="https://www.hillaryclinton.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/hillaryclinton">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/hillaryclinton">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span id="dt-positions"><a href="https://www.donaldjtrump.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/DonaldTrump">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/donaldtrump">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span id="gj-positions"><a href="https://www.johnsonweld.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="http://www.twitter.com/govgaryjohnson">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="http://www.facebook.com/govgaryjohnson">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/c/govgaryjohnson">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><a href="http://www.jill2016.com/">Campaign Website</a></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/drjillstein">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/drjillstein">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/jill2016">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Jobs</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton wants to invest in infrastructure to bolster the economy, including in clean energy. She is also focused on modernizing the economy through manufacturing and technology. She advocates for an increase in the minimum wage to $12 an hour nationally, with room for states to go higher, and she wants equal pay for equal work. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump believes that lower taxes and less regulation, as a whole, will bolster the economy. He believes the U.S. has agreed to bad trade deals, which he promises to renegotiate, that have led to lost American jobs to countries like Mexico and China. He promised to keep companies in the U.S. and to make American manufacturing great again.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson generally favors less regulation, though any regulation which reigns in harmful actors will stay, he says. He also believes that out-of-control spending has hurt the U.S. economy, and that this spending needs to be reigned in. He believes smaller and less government will allow the economy to flourish.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes in "living-wage jobs for every American who needs work." Government would be the last resort employer under this plan. She also believes in a $15 minimum wage and the breaking up of banks that are "too big to fail." Key to Stein's, and the Green Party's, platform is a "Green New Deal," which aims to create jobs through the building of clean energy infrastructure, so that America relies on 100% clean energy by 2030.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --><br /><br /> <h1>Taxes</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">"Hillary will implement a "fair share surcharge" on multi-millionaires and billionaires." She will also fight for measures like the Buffett Rule, so that wealthier individuals pay their fair share of taxes, she says. She also looks to close up any loopholes which benefit Wall Street, cut taxes for small businesses, and "provide tax relief to working families from the rising costs they face." A Clinton Administration will look to tax high-frequency trading on Wall Street.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump believes lower taxes will help the economy. In particular, he believes that business taxes are too high, and that they need to be lowered so that they are competitive with the rest of the world. He believes that a simplified tax system will help. Like many Democrats, Trump believes in closing the carried interest loophole. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson proposes getting rid of tax loopholes, as well as double taxes on small businesses. He favors "the replacement of all income and payroll taxes with a single consumption tax that determines your tax burden by how much you spend, not how much you earn."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants Wall Street corporations to pay their fair share in taxes. Also believes in a tax on companies that pollute. She believes in higher taxes for the wealthy, and lower taxes for the poor and middle class.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>National Debt</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">"From the Democratic Party Platform: ""We believe that by making those at the top and the largest corporations pay their fair share we can pay for ambitious progressive investments that create good-paying jobs and offer security to working families without adding to the debt."""</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">"You never have to default because you print the money," Trump said at one time. He has also suggested at times that borrowing is not a problem and that the U.S. could renegotiate its debt. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson plans to veto any bill which results in deficit spending. He also touts his record of vetoing many bills as governor of New Mexico, vetos he said helped balance New Mexico's budget. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein said on her campaign website in 2012 that she would reduce "the budget deficit by restoring full employment, cutting the bloated military budget, and cutting private health insurance waste."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Trade</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton has moved in her support for trade deals, and has a new rubric for them, saying they must provide jobs for Americans, not sacrifice U.S. security, and be good for American national and international priorities. She supported NAFTA in the past, but admits to troubling outcomes for American jobs, and after supporting the Trans-Pacific Partnership as it was in development, she has come out against the version put forward by the Obama Administration. On trade, she says she's held deals to "the same test. Will they create jobs in America? Will they raise incomes in America? And are they good for our national security?" </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has campaigned vocally against NAFTA, other past trade deals, and TPP. His vews on trade and the United States is best reflected in what he said at the Republican National Convention--"Americanism, not globalism, will be our credo."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson generally supports NAFTA, TPP, and any other free trade agreements. He believes that any jobs lost to NAFTA while he was Governor of New Mexico were jobs that New Mexico didn't want anyway.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes that NAFTA and other similar agreements takes away jobs, hurts wages, and overall has negative economic impacts on Americans. She wants to "enact fair trade laws that benefits local workers and communities."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Immigration</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">There are two major facets to Clinton's immigration plan: protect families and provide a pathway to citizenship. She says that comprehensive immigration reform is desperately needed.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump promises no amnesty to undocumented immigrants and promises mass deportations, though at times he has appeared to soften some of his stances. His major campaign promise is to end illegal immigration and to institute "extreme vetting" of individuals, especially refugees, seeking entrance into the country. He talks about having a secure border and promises to build a wall along the southern border that he promises Mexico will pay for. He has also questioned birthright citizenship.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson desn't believe that immigration is as simple as building a wall. "We should focus on creating a more efficient system of providing work visas, conducting background checks, and incentivizing non-citizens to pay their taxes, obtain proof of employment, and otherwise assimilate with our diverse society," his website says. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">"Create a welcoming path to citizenship for immigrants" is posted on Stein's website. Past policy positions also indicates that she is not in favor of the mass deportation of people which has happened under President Obama and promised to a greater degree by Trump.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Health Care</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton wants to defend, tweak, and expand, but not repeal, Obamacare. She praises how many more people have become insured, but she wants to get costs down.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump promises to repeal Obamacare, and replace it with something far better. He says health care companies must be allowed to sell policies across state lines. He also wants transparency with health care costs and providers, and to "allow individuals to fully deduct health insurance premium payments from their tax returns under the current tax system." He argues for increased competitive, not government regulation of health care. Trump has also said that everyone deserves health care.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Generally speaking, Johnson is in favor of repealing Obamacare. He believes that free market competition will do the best job of covering health care for people.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes in a Medicare for All system.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>The Environment</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton will encourage clean energy: "Launch a $60 billion Clean Energy Challenge to partner with states, cities, and rural communities to cut carbon pollution and expand clean energy, including for low-income families." "Invest in clean energy infrastructure, innovation, manufacturing and workforce development to make the U.S. economy more competitive and create good-paying jobs and careers." </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump does not discuss the environment much. He has called climate change a hoax. And, he believes that the Environmental Protection Agency has too many regulations.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson places emphasis on protection of National Parks and wants the Environmental Protection Agency to "focus on its true mission." He also believes in regulations to protect from pollutors, but also believes that the government meddles too much in deciding which companies determine the future of clean energy.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein and the Green Party are, historically, especially focused on the environment. The Green New Deal looks to have the U.S. be on 100% clean energy by 2030. Stein wants to end use of fossil fuels and any support thereof. She places a special emphasis on protecting ecosystems, and strengthening environmental justice laws.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Foreign Policy</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton believes that the United States should defend its allies, push for diplomacy whenever possible, and be firm but not overaggressive with rivals such as China, Russia, and Iran. She is known as an interventionist, but has also spent time negotiating peace deals as Secretary of State. Her vote in favor of the Iraq War as a U.S. Senator is one that she has long been criticized for and has herself called a mistake.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has an "America First" foreign policy, based on protecting the interests of the United States above all else, not meddling in other countries' affairs, protecting American security and jobs, seemingly no matter what it takes to do so. Trump has promised an aggressive approach with Mexico and illegal immigration, China and currency manipulation, and the Middle East and wars in the region. Trump has been criticized and questioned for an apparent coziness with Vladimir Putin of Russia, which he has denied.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the U.S. meddles too much in foreign affairs and wars, and that needs to stop. He believes in fixing the problems that exist at home, while at the same time building relationships with allies abroad. Johnson has struggled with discussing foreign affairs on the campaign trail.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants to focus on diplomacy whenever possible, but also the punishment of abusers of human rights. Those human rights abusers include Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Israel, she says.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Combatting ISIS</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton looks to support counter-terrorism law enformcement with the tools they need, and an increase of the airstrike campaign against ISIS in the Middle East. She has called for an "intelligence surge" to help the U.S. in its efforts against ISIS and other foreign threats.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Generally speaking, Trump calls for a very aggressive military approach to ISIS, at times using expletives to explain his plan to bomb its forces and strongholds. He has repeatedly called for destroying oil fields that ISIS may have access to. But it is unclear to what extent he will pursue these strategies because he has not released as many plans regarding ISIS. Trump says U.S. leaders are foolish in telegraphing their military plans and that he will not divulge his. He has repeatedly insulted both U.S. political and military leaders.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the "meddling" of past administrations, Republican and Democrat, have created the monster that is ISIS. He has not shown a particular adeptness at discussing foreign affairs or presenting a plan to help eliminate threats from ISIS.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein says little about ISIS, but overall she is calling for the U.S. to not be engaged in war and foreign intervention.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Gun Control</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton has made gun control a focus of her campaign; calling for expanding background checks, and keeping "guns out of the hands of domestic abusers, other violent criminals, and the severely mentally ill." Clinton has said she believes in the Second Amendment and responsible gun ownership, but that she wants to do more to keep guns out of the wrong hands.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump is pro-gun ownership and has promised to defend the Second Amendment. He believes that current gun regulations are a failure, and that background checks need to be fixed because it seems like criminals don't go through background checks. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson does not believe in increasing gun regulations. He is of the mind that if you take guns away only outlaws and criminals will have guns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes that the ownership of guns should be regulated for the sake of public safety.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Justice Reform</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports legislation to end any form of racial profiling. She wants law enforcement to focus on violent crimes and not petty ones like possession of marijuana. National guidelines should be brought in on use of force, she says, and body cameras should be provided to every police department in the United States. She has regularly spoken about the need to improve community-police relationships and about incidents of police brutality against people of color. And, she believes in ending the use of private prisons.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump calls himself the "Law and Order candidate," though as to what that means in terms of policy is unclear, though he has advocated for a robust stop-and-frisk policy nationwide based on what he sees as its success in New York City. Trump often talks about the need to support and respect police.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that all unnecessary laws should be taken out so that not as many things are criminalized. He also believes that there should be an end to the "War on Drugs."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants to end police brutality and de-militarize the police. She, like Johnson, wants to end the War on Drugs. She also proposes that drug addictions are treated like a health problem, not a criminal one.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Education</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports the Common Core learning standards. She also believes in universal pre-kindergarten, college education that is debt free, and free tuition at all community colleges. She also looks to end overly punitive policies against students at schools and has discussed doing more for English Language Learners.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump rejects Common Core and believes that education decisions, as a whole, should be left up to states. He therefore wants to completely abolish the Department of Education.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson rejects Common Core and believes that education decisions should be left to the states. He also wants to abolish the Department of Education because he believes that the federal government has no right to be involved with education decisions.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein is not supportive of Common Core or standardized testing (and thinks curricula should be designed by educators). She prefers evaluation of teachers done by fellow professionals. She supports tuition-free, and debt-free, education through all four years of college. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>LGBTQ Rights</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton pushes for full rights for LGBTQ people, in the United States and around the world. Clinton has 'evolved' fairly quickly on related issues, like marriage equality.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump vows to protect LGBTQ citizens and has had several particularly significant moments, including at the Republican National Convention, around promoting and protecting LGBTQ rights. He has not stated personal support for same-sex marriage, but says that it is the law of the land and that it should be protected as such.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the government should not be in the business of telling people who to marry. He therefore does not look to restrict same-sex marriage, and in fact he cites this non-government interference idea as a major reason why he supported same-sex marriage before many liberals did the same.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein says that she will seek to end all forms of discrimination against the LGBTQ community.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Abortion</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton looks to protect the reproductive rights of all women and protecting a woman's right to choose to have an abortion. She is also proud of her endorsement from Planned Parenthood.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump calls himself "pro-life" and at times has called for the defunding of Planned Parenthood. However he has at times touted a number of services that Planned Parenthood provides, and earlier in his life he considered himself "pro-choice." He has explained an 'evolution' on the issue. Trump has said that if he appoints several Supreme Court justices it is likely that Roe v. Wade is overturned.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that abortion is a deeply personal choice, and that as such the governnment should not be in the business of deciding who does or does not get abortions. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein views reproductive freedom as a key facet of tackling women's rights issues. She also wants to expand access to the "morning after" pill.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Supreme Court Vacancies</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">The Supreme Court, in Clinton's eyes, should help protect women's rights and LGBTQ rights, and overturn the Citizens United case. She has not committed to renominate President Obama's SCOTUS pick, Merrick Garland, for the currently vacant seat.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has stressed that the Supreme Court must protect the Second Amendment in particular, as it would be under threat, he says, if Clinton is elected President. Trump's SCOTUS nominees would be pro-life and more conservative in nature, he has said, pointing to recently-deceased Justice Antonin Scalia as a model.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson would use potential nominees' positions on cases such as Kelo v. City of New London (a 2005 case on the issue of eminent domain) and others related to key issues for Libertarians to determine who he might nominate to the SCOTUS.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein would nominate justices to the SCOTUS who would overturn Citizens United and help restrict the flow of corporate money into politics.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Campaign Finance Reform</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports an overturn of Citizens United to limit the impact of money in politics. She also wants legislation which will "require outside groups to publicly disclose significant political spending." Her other piece of suggested reform is to start a "small-donor matching system for presidential and congressional elections to give small donors greater influence."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has described Political Action Committees (PACs) as a "horrible thing" because he feels that PACs lack transparency. Trump has also claimed that politicians do favors for donors, citing his own experience as a donor. He does not promote, though, public financing of campaigns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that spending in campaigns, including from unions and corporations, is perfectly allowable. Any restrictions on campaign finance would be a limit to free speech, in Johnson's opinion.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants an overturn of the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court case. She believes that corporations should not be allowed to fund political campaigns, but believes that there should instead be public funding of campaigns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <div>***<br />by Brendan Birth and Ben Max<br /><a href="https://twitter.com/GothamGazette" target="_blank">@GothamGazette</a></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Feedback? Email Ben at bmax@gothamgazette.com</div> <!-- CLEAR --> </div> </article> </section> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2016/election-candidates.png" alt="election candidates" width="600" height="399" /></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/#fullissue" target="_self" style="background-color: #02619c; border-radius: 25px; color: #fff; cursor: pointer; font-weight: bolder; margin: 2px; padding: 5px;" title="Click here to see the full list">Click here to see the full list</a></strong></p> <p> </p> <section> <article> <a id="fullissue"></a> <div id="hidden1" class="issues-list"> <h1>Vice President</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Tim Kaine of Virginia. U.S. Senator, former Governor of Virginia, former Mayor of Richmond.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Mike Pence of Indiana. Governor of Indiana, former member of the United States House of Represenatatives, where he was a leader of the Tea Party movement.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">William Weld of Massachusetts. Former Republican governor of Massachusetts 1991, former U.S. Senate candidate.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Vice President</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Ajamu Baraka of Georgia. Human rights activist, founding executive director of the U.S. Human Rights Network.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Bio</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Hillary Clinton, born in 1947, is most notable for serving as First Lady of the United States (1993-2001), a United States Senator from New York (2001-2009), and the United States Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013. She's known for, among other things, her push for national health care reform in 1993-1994 as First Lady.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Donald Trump, born in 1946, is a businessman, real estate mogul, and television personality. He has built further on the buisness empire started by his father and made a national name for his real estate and casino businesses, and as the host of The Apprentice.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Gary Johnson, born in 1953, founded what became one of the largest construction companies in New Mexico. Former governor of New Mexico, winning his longshot 1994 bid, serving two terms. Has long-favored small government. Also ran for President as the Libertarian Party nominee in 2012. He got 0.99% of the national vote that year.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Bio</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Jill Stein, born in 1950, is a physician and activist whose biggest focus has been environmental and health issues. She was the Green Party Candidate for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002 and 2010, and the Green Party Candidate for President in 2012. She received 0.36% of the national vote that year.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Campaign Websites</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span class="header"></span><span id="hc-positions"><a href="https://www.hillaryclinton.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/hillaryclinton">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/hillaryclinton">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span id="dt-positions"><a href="https://www.donaldjtrump.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/DonaldTrump">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/donaldtrump">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><span id="gj-positions"><a href="https://www.johnsonweld.com">Campaign Website</a></span></p> <p><a href="http://www.twitter.com/govgaryjohnson">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="http://www.facebook.com/govgaryjohnson">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/c/govgaryjohnson">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"> <p><a href="http://www.jill2016.com/">Campaign Website</a></p> <p><a href="https://twitter.com/drjillstein">Twitter</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.facebook.com/drjillstein">Facebook</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/jill2016">YouTube</a></p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Jobs</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton wants to invest in infrastructure to bolster the economy, including in clean energy. She is also focused on modernizing the economy through manufacturing and technology. She advocates for an increase in the minimum wage to $12 an hour nationally, with room for states to go higher, and she wants equal pay for equal work. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump believes that lower taxes and less regulation, as a whole, will bolster the economy. He believes the U.S. has agreed to bad trade deals, which he promises to renegotiate, that have led to lost American jobs to countries like Mexico and China. He promised to keep companies in the U.S. and to make American manufacturing great again.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson generally favors less regulation, though any regulation which reigns in harmful actors will stay, he says. He also believes that out-of-control spending has hurt the U.S. economy, and that this spending needs to be reigned in. He believes smaller and less government will allow the economy to flourish.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Jobs</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes in "living-wage jobs for every American who needs work." Government would be the last resort employer under this plan. She also believes in a $15 minimum wage and the breaking up of banks that are "too big to fail." Key to Stein's, and the Green Party's, platform is a "Green New Deal," which aims to create jobs through the building of clean energy infrastructure, so that America relies on 100% clean energy by 2030.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --><br /><br /> <h1>Taxes</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">"Hillary will implement a "fair share surcharge" on multi-millionaires and billionaires." She will also fight for measures like the Buffett Rule, so that wealthier individuals pay their fair share of taxes, she says. She also looks to close up any loopholes which benefit Wall Street, cut taxes for small businesses, and "provide tax relief to working families from the rising costs they face." A Clinton Administration will look to tax high-frequency trading on Wall Street.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump believes lower taxes will help the economy. In particular, he believes that business taxes are too high, and that they need to be lowered so that they are competitive with the rest of the world. He believes that a simplified tax system will help. Like many Democrats, Trump believes in closing the carried interest loophole. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson proposes getting rid of tax loopholes, as well as double taxes on small businesses. He favors "the replacement of all income and payroll taxes with a single consumption tax that determines your tax burden by how much you spend, not how much you earn."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Taxes</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants Wall Street corporations to pay their fair share in taxes. Also believes in a tax on companies that pollute. She believes in higher taxes for the wealthy, and lower taxes for the poor and middle class.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>National Debt</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">"From the Democratic Party Platform: ""We believe that by making those at the top and the largest corporations pay their fair share we can pay for ambitious progressive investments that create good-paying jobs and offer security to working families without adding to the debt."""</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">"You never have to default because you print the money," Trump said at one time. He has also suggested at times that borrowing is not a problem and that the U.S. could renegotiate its debt. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson plans to veto any bill which results in deficit spending. He also touts his record of vetoing many bills as governor of New Mexico, vetos he said helped balance New Mexico's budget. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">National Debt</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein said on her campaign website in 2012 that she would reduce "the budget deficit by restoring full employment, cutting the bloated military budget, and cutting private health insurance waste."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Trade</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton has moved in her support for trade deals, and has a new rubric for them, saying they must provide jobs for Americans, not sacrifice U.S. security, and be good for American national and international priorities. She supported NAFTA in the past, but admits to troubling outcomes for American jobs, and after supporting the Trans-Pacific Partnership as it was in development, she has come out against the version put forward by the Obama Administration. On trade, she says she's held deals to "the same test. Will they create jobs in America? Will they raise incomes in America? And are they good for our national security?" </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has campaigned vocally against NAFTA, other past trade deals, and TPP. His vews on trade and the United States is best reflected in what he said at the Republican National Convention--"Americanism, not globalism, will be our credo."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson generally supports NAFTA, TPP, and any other free trade agreements. He believes that any jobs lost to NAFTA while he was Governor of New Mexico were jobs that New Mexico didn't want anyway.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Trade</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes that NAFTA and other similar agreements takes away jobs, hurts wages, and overall has negative economic impacts on Americans. She wants to "enact fair trade laws that benefits local workers and communities."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Immigration</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">There are two major facets to Clinton's immigration plan: protect families and provide a pathway to citizenship. She says that comprehensive immigration reform is desperately needed.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump promises no amnesty to undocumented immigrants and promises mass deportations, though at times he has appeared to soften some of his stances. His major campaign promise is to end illegal immigration and to institute "extreme vetting" of individuals, especially refugees, seeking entrance into the country. He talks about having a secure border and promises to build a wall along the southern border that he promises Mexico will pay for. He has also questioned birthright citizenship.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson desn't believe that immigration is as simple as building a wall. "We should focus on creating a more efficient system of providing work visas, conducting background checks, and incentivizing non-citizens to pay their taxes, obtain proof of employment, and otherwise assimilate with our diverse society," his website says. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Immigration</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">"Create a welcoming path to citizenship for immigrants" is posted on Stein's website. Past policy positions also indicates that she is not in favor of the mass deportation of people which has happened under President Obama and promised to a greater degree by Trump.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Health Care</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton wants to defend, tweak, and expand, but not repeal, Obamacare. She praises how many more people have become insured, but she wants to get costs down.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump promises to repeal Obamacare, and replace it with something far better. He says health care companies must be allowed to sell policies across state lines. He also wants transparency with health care costs and providers, and to "allow individuals to fully deduct health insurance premium payments from their tax returns under the current tax system." He argues for increased competitive, not government regulation of health care. Trump has also said that everyone deserves health care.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Generally speaking, Johnson is in favor of repealing Obamacare. He believes that free market competition will do the best job of covering health care for people.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Health Care</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes in a Medicare for All system.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>The Environment</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton will encourage clean energy: "Launch a $60 billion Clean Energy Challenge to partner with states, cities, and rural communities to cut carbon pollution and expand clean energy, including for low-income families." "Invest in clean energy infrastructure, innovation, manufacturing and workforce development to make the U.S. economy more competitive and create good-paying jobs and careers." </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump does not discuss the environment much. He has called climate change a hoax. And, he believes that the Environmental Protection Agency has too many regulations.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson places emphasis on protection of National Parks and wants the Environmental Protection Agency to "focus on its true mission." He also believes in regulations to protect from pollutors, but also believes that the government meddles too much in deciding which companies determine the future of clean energy.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">The Environment</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein and the Green Party are, historically, especially focused on the environment. The Green New Deal looks to have the U.S. be on 100% clean energy by 2030. Stein wants to end use of fossil fuels and any support thereof. She places a special emphasis on protecting ecosystems, and strengthening environmental justice laws.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Foreign Policy</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton believes that the United States should defend its allies, push for diplomacy whenever possible, and be firm but not overaggressive with rivals such as China, Russia, and Iran. She is known as an interventionist, but has also spent time negotiating peace deals as Secretary of State. Her vote in favor of the Iraq War as a U.S. Senator is one that she has long been criticized for and has herself called a mistake.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has an "America First" foreign policy, based on protecting the interests of the United States above all else, not meddling in other countries' affairs, protecting American security and jobs, seemingly no matter what it takes to do so. Trump has promised an aggressive approach with Mexico and illegal immigration, China and currency manipulation, and the Middle East and wars in the region. Trump has been criticized and questioned for an apparent coziness with Vladimir Putin of Russia, which he has denied.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the U.S. meddles too much in foreign affairs and wars, and that needs to stop. He believes in fixing the problems that exist at home, while at the same time building relationships with allies abroad. Johnson has struggled with discussing foreign affairs on the campaign trail.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Foreign Policy</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants to focus on diplomacy whenever possible, but also the punishment of abusers of human rights. Those human rights abusers include Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Israel, she says.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Combatting ISIS</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton looks to support counter-terrorism law enformcement with the tools they need, and an increase of the airstrike campaign against ISIS in the Middle East. She has called for an "intelligence surge" to help the U.S. in its efforts against ISIS and other foreign threats.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Generally speaking, Trump calls for a very aggressive military approach to ISIS, at times using expletives to explain his plan to bomb its forces and strongholds. He has repeatedly called for destroying oil fields that ISIS may have access to. But it is unclear to what extent he will pursue these strategies because he has not released as many plans regarding ISIS. Trump says U.S. leaders are foolish in telegraphing their military plans and that he will not divulge his. He has repeatedly insulted both U.S. political and military leaders.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the "meddling" of past administrations, Republican and Democrat, have created the monster that is ISIS. He has not shown a particular adeptness at discussing foreign affairs or presenting a plan to help eliminate threats from ISIS.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">ISIS</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein says little about ISIS, but overall she is calling for the U.S. to not be engaged in war and foreign intervention.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Gun Control</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton has made gun control a focus of her campaign; calling for expanding background checks, and keeping "guns out of the hands of domestic abusers, other violent criminals, and the severely mentally ill." Clinton has said she believes in the Second Amendment and responsible gun ownership, but that she wants to do more to keep guns out of the wrong hands.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump is pro-gun ownership and has promised to defend the Second Amendment. He believes that current gun regulations are a failure, and that background checks need to be fixed because it seems like criminals don't go through background checks. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson does not believe in increasing gun regulations. He is of the mind that if you take guns away only outlaws and criminals will have guns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Gun Control</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein believes that the ownership of guns should be regulated for the sake of public safety.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Justice Reform</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports legislation to end any form of racial profiling. She wants law enforcement to focus on violent crimes and not petty ones like possession of marijuana. National guidelines should be brought in on use of force, she says, and body cameras should be provided to every police department in the United States. She has regularly spoken about the need to improve community-police relationships and about incidents of police brutality against people of color. And, she believes in ending the use of private prisons.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump calls himself the "Law and Order candidate," though as to what that means in terms of policy is unclear, though he has advocated for a robust stop-and-frisk policy nationwide based on what he sees as its success in New York City. Trump often talks about the need to support and respect police.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that all unnecessary laws should be taken out so that not as many things are criminalized. He also believes that there should be an end to the "War on Drugs."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Justice Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants to end police brutality and de-militarize the police. She, like Johnson, wants to end the War on Drugs. She also proposes that drug addictions are treated like a health problem, not a criminal one.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Education</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports the Common Core learning standards. She also believes in universal pre-kindergarten, college education that is debt free, and free tuition at all community colleges. She also looks to end overly punitive policies against students at schools and has discussed doing more for English Language Learners.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump rejects Common Core and believes that education decisions, as a whole, should be left up to states. He therefore wants to completely abolish the Department of Education.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson rejects Common Core and believes that education decisions should be left to the states. He also wants to abolish the Department of Education because he believes that the federal government has no right to be involved with education decisions.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Education</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein is not supportive of Common Core or standardized testing (and thinks curricula should be designed by educators). She prefers evaluation of teachers done by fellow professionals. She supports tuition-free, and debt-free, education through all four years of college. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>LGBTQ Rights</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton pushes for full rights for LGBTQ people, in the United States and around the world. Clinton has 'evolved' fairly quickly on related issues, like marriage equality.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump vows to protect LGBTQ citizens and has had several particularly significant moments, including at the Republican National Convention, around promoting and protecting LGBTQ rights. He has not stated personal support for same-sex marriage, but says that it is the law of the land and that it should be protected as such.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that the government should not be in the business of telling people who to marry. He therefore does not look to restrict same-sex marriage, and in fact he cites this non-government interference idea as a major reason why he supported same-sex marriage before many liberals did the same.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">LGBTQ Rights</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein says that she will seek to end all forms of discrimination against the LGBTQ community.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Abortion</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton looks to protect the reproductive rights of all women and protecting a woman's right to choose to have an abortion. She is also proud of her endorsement from Planned Parenthood.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump calls himself "pro-life" and at times has called for the defunding of Planned Parenthood. However he has at times touted a number of services that Planned Parenthood provides, and earlier in his life he considered himself "pro-choice." He has explained an 'evolution' on the issue. Trump has said that if he appoints several Supreme Court justices it is likely that Roe v. Wade is overturned.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that abortion is a deeply personal choice, and that as such the governnment should not be in the business of deciding who does or does not get abortions. </span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Abortion</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein views reproductive freedom as a key facet of tackling women's rights issues. She also wants to expand access to the "morning after" pill.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Supreme Court Vacancies</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">The Supreme Court, in Clinton's eyes, should help protect women's rights and LGBTQ rights, and overturn the Citizens United case. She has not committed to renominate President Obama's SCOTUS pick, Merrick Garland, for the currently vacant seat.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has stressed that the Supreme Court must protect the Second Amendment in particular, as it would be under threat, he says, if Clinton is elected President. Trump's SCOTUS nominees would be pro-life and more conservative in nature, he has said, pointing to recently-deceased Justice Antonin Scalia as a model.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson would use potential nominees' positions on cases such as Kelo v. City of New London (a 2005 case on the issue of eminent domain) and others related to key issues for Libertarians to determine who he might nominate to the SCOTUS.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Supreme Court Vacancies</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein would nominate justices to the SCOTUS who would overturn Citizens United and help restrict the flow of corporate money into politics.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <h1>&nbsp;</h1> <h1>Campaign Finance Reform</h1> <div id="hclinton"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/hillary-clinton2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="hc-positions">Clinton supports an overturn of Citizens United to limit the impact of money in politics. She also wants legislation which will "require outside groups to publicly disclose significant political spending." Her other piece of suggested reform is to start a "small-donor matching system for presidential and congressional elections to give small donors greater influence."</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="dtrump"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/donald-trump2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="dt-positions">Trump has described Political Action Committees (PACs) as a "horrible thing" because he feels that PACs lack transparency. Trump has also claimed that politicians do favors for donors, citing his own experience as a donor. He does not promote, though, public financing of campaigns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="gjohnson"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/gary-johnson2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="gj-positions">Johnson believes that spending in campaigns, including from unions and corporations, is perfectly allowable. Any restrictions on campaign finance would be a limit to free speech, in Johnson's opinion.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <div id="jstein"> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="width: 75px; max-height: 129px;"><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/election2016/includes/imgs/jill-stein2.png" alt="" style="margin-right: 8px; width: 75px;" align="left" /></td> <td style="vertical-align: top;"><span class="header">Campaign Finance Reform</span><br style="margin-bottom: 7px;" /> <span id="js-candidates">Stein wants an overturn of the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court case. She believes that corporations should not be allowed to fund political campaigns, but believes that there should instead be public funding of campaigns.</span></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <!-- CLEAR --> <div>***<br />by Brendan Birth and Ben Max<br /><a href="https://twitter.com/GothamGazette" target="_blank">@GothamGazette</a></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Feedback? Email Ben at bmax@gothamgazette.com</div> <!-- CLEAR --> </div> </article> </section>