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March 15, 2021

69 percent of voters support new taxes that would reduce inequality in the Golden State


Monday, March 15, 2020

Contact: Anna Bahr,


SACRAMENTO -- Assemblymember Alex Lee today introduced a new bill in the state capital that would create a first-of-its-kind wealth tax on California’s wealthiest residents and generate an estimated $7.5 billion per year. 

California is home to the most billionaires in the US and has the highest poverty gap. In the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, California billionaires made an additional $175 billion, while millions of Californians were filing for unemployment.

The bill draws on new polling from Build Affordable Faster California (BAFCA) that shows that a wealth tax scores a crushing 69-28 victory among California voters, including Republicans.

“The majority of Californians are concerned about the undeniable inequity between wealthy Californians and everyone else,” said Jane Kim, senior advisor for BAFCA. “A growing number of elected leaders from New York, Washington DC to California understand the dangerous implications of this inequity, which had only been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and are introducing tax proposals which would impact a tiny percentage of Americans while making a real dent in our dramatic levels of inequity and investing in working and middle class Americans.”

The BAFCA poll shows that 68 percent of voters support a wealth tax on Californians worth $100 million or more, so they pay two cents on every dollar in their wealth portfolio. 

The tax even received substantial support among Republican voters. When asked whether they supported increasing the tax on personal incomes of $1 million or more by 2 percent, with 39 percent supporting it and 59 percent opposing. 

As for the fearmongering argument from conservative pundits that businesses will flee the Golden State because of higher taxes? The majority of Californians are decidedly unworried: 57 percent of voters agreed that they were not concerned with the spectre of the ultra-wealthy leaving the state.