Seeker of the Democratic nomination for U.S. president John Delaney made a campaign stop in Perry Sunday afternoon, hosting a Caucus and Quesadillas session at the Casa de Oro restaurant.
The former Maryland congressperson answered questions from about 30 Perry-area voters on topics ranging from trade tariffs and health insurance to immigration and LGBTQ rights.
Delaney, who started his campaign in July 2017, calls himself a “pragmatist” and a “realist,” and his three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives followed a successful career as a financial-services entrepreneur.
He praised Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi for leading the inquiry into the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump for high crimes and misdemeanors, but he predicted conviction in the U.S. Senate would be unlikely and that Republicans will continue to countenance Trump’s crimes in order to retain political power.
Delaney said a wealth tax, such as the 2 percent tax on fortunes over $50 million proposed by U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, is unconstitutional in the U.S. and could only be brought about by means of a constitutional amendment. He recommended raising the top rate on capital gains taxes instead.
“People who invest for a living almost pay half the tax rate of people who work for a living,” he said. “If you want to raise money from wealthy Americans, you should make the capital gains rate the same as the ordinary income tax rate for incomes above, say, $250,000 a year.”
Citing Nebraska investor Warren Buffett, Delaney said a generation of misinformation has convinced many Americans that the government is wicked and incompetent and that higher taxes stifle investment and innovation.
“The biggest myth — or I’ll say, lie — that has been perpetrated on the American people is that wealthy people will not invest their money unless they get a better deal on their taxes,” he said. “That is a lie. It is a complete myth and fabrication that has been perpetrated by the anti-tax movement, including think tanks that do bogus research.”
The truth of this lie is as firmly fixed in the minds of anti-tax Iowans as the lie that fiscal conservatism is a unique virtue of the Republican party, an article of faith that the history of Republican deficits from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush to Trump cannot shake.
Delaney’s Iowa campaign director, Monica Biddix, quit the campaign Friday in order to “pursue other opportunities,” according to a report by the Associated Press. Delaney has named Brent Roske as his new state director. Roske previously served as Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson’s Iowa director.