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Warren Buffett takes GOP to Task Offering his own Cash to Pay Down U.S. Debt

January 12th 2012

Money - Money Money Money

Business mogul Warren Buffet is promising to match any donation Republican members make toward cutting the national deficit.

And he upped the ante when it came to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), saying he would match the leader's donations three-to-one.

His pledge comes after McConnell said that if Buffett is feeling guilty about not paying more in taxes, he should just send in a check.

"With regard to his tax rate, if he’s feeling guilty about it, I think he should send in a check," McConnell said on NBC's "Meet the Press" in September. Buffett told Time magazine: "It restores my faith in human nature to think that there are people who have been around Washington all this time and are not yet so cynical as to think that [the deficit] can’t be solved by voluntary contributions. And, I’ll even go three for one for McConnell."

The billionaire businessman had previously argued in a New York Times op-ed that the tax system is badly flawed and that the rich are paying far too little in taxes because investment gains are taxed at a lower level than are wages. The Obama administration touted the Buffett's call in its argument to raise taxes on millionaires, dubbing their proposal the "Buffett Rule."

In response, McConnell's office welcomed Buffett's pledge and said Democrats and President Obama should be included as well.

"Sen. McConnell says that Washington should be smaller, rather than taxes getting bigger," McConnell spokesman Don Stewart said. "And since some, like President Obama and Mr. Buffett want to pay higher taxes, Congress made it possible for them to call their own bluff and send in a check. So I look forward to Mr. Buffett matching a healthy batch of checks from those who actually want to pay higher taxes, including Congressional Democrats, the President and the DNC." 

Daniel Strauss writes for The Hill, from where this article wes adapted.


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