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Ocasio-Cortez Defends Her 70-Percent Billionaires Tax Rate Proposal Over Ice Cream With Colbert

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez explains her 70-percent marginal tax rate on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert."
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez explains her 70-percent marginal tax rate on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." Video Credit: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Another prominent New York politician took center stage on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” taking aim at some of the nation’s wealthiest.

Freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-Bronx/Queens), a 2007 Yorktown High School graduate, appeared on the CBS late night show on Monday to debunk rumors regarding her proposed 70 percent marginal income tax, which would target multi-millionaires.

“When we talk about a 70 percent marginal tax rate,” she said to Colbert. “It’s not on all of your income. It’s on your 10 millionth and one dollar. So after you make 10 million dollars in a year your dollars after that start to get progressively taxed at a much higher rate.

“That is the tax interpretation of one answer to the question of how much is,” she continued. “At what point, at what level are we just living in excess and what kind of society do we live in. And do we want to live in a city where billionaires have their own personal Uber helipads when people in the same city who are working 80 hours a week to feed their kids.”

Ocasio-Cortez's appearance came days after New York U.S. Democratic Kirsten Gillibrand announced that she will be running for president on “The Late Show,” throwing her hat into what is expected to be a crowded field of Democrats challenging President Donald Trump for his seat in the Oval Office.

The Congresswoman noted that under Dwight Eisenhower’s Republican administration, some of the nation’s wealthiest members faced 90 percent marginal tax rates.

“I don’t think. It’s how we choose to interpret events and things like activism and advocacy,” she said. “If you think activism is inherently divisive - and today is Martin Luther King Day - and people called Martin Luther King divisive. We forget he was wildly unpopular when he was advocating for the civil rights act.

“What we need to really realize is that social movements are the moral compass and should be the moral compass of our politics.”

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