Pete Buttigieg backpedals from his tax-the-poor mileage plan as fast as he can

If Pete Buttigieg thinks he has a political future after his latest gaffe as Joe Biden's transportation secretary, he's in for a surprise.

Four days ago, Mr. Smug weather-ballooned his plan to tax the working poor up the wazoo.  According to CNBC:

A vehicle mileage tax could be on the table in talks about how to finance the White House's expected multi-trillion-dollar infrastructure proposal, according to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

Buttigieg, who spoke with CNBC's Kayla Tausche on Friday, also contended that President Joe Biden's forthcoming plans to rebuild the nation's roads, bridges and waterways would lead to a net gain for the U.S. taxpayer and not a net outlay.

"When you think about infrastructure, it's a classic example of the kind of investment that has a return on that investment," he said. "That's one of many reasons why we think this is so important. This is a jobs vision as much as it is an infrastructure vision, a climate vision and more."

He also weighed in on several potential revenue-generating options to fund the project. He spoke fondly of a mileage levy, which would tax travelers based on the distance of the journey instead of on how much gasoline they consume.

"A so-called vehicle-miles-traveled tax or mileage tax, whatever you want to call it, could be a way to do it," he said.

In other words, Little Lord Fauntleroy told the working poor who drive long commutes, drive taxis, drive farm and heavy hauling equipment, and operate trucks that they can eat cake. 

People, see, living on the outskirts of overpriced blue cities because they can't afford its skyrocketing housing costs, make those long, horrible, traffic-plagued commutes on Third World–looking highways by choice.  They do it because they like it, and according to Buttigieg, he's there to put a stop to it.  Punchbowl's gone, polluters.  Truckers carrying heavy medical equipment to distant hospitals save COVID patients?  Take the bus, bub, or we tax you to hell.  Uber drivers transporting someone to the emergency room or keeping a drunk off the road?  Pay up, miscreant.  Farmers driving tractors to provide Pete with his gourmet meals?  You pay the tax, enough about me.

In the world of Rev. Pete, surveilling and taxing these wicked sinners against the god of global warming is all it will take to get them to change their wayward ways.  Greenie carrot.  Greenie stick.  Incentives all of a sudden matter.  The world turns green and virtuous.  See how it works?

It must have come natural to him to propose to stick it to the poor in a bid to raise those four trillions needed to pay for the Democrats' upcoming infrastructure spending plan, given that every last decision he has ever made for others has been a bad one.

Apparently, his stick-it-to-the-little-guy proposal went over so badly that the White House disavowed him, and someone forced him to backpedal on his proposal, made quite clearly just four days ago, pretending it never happened.

He's backpedaling as fast as he can.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Monday that neither a gas tax nor a mileage tax would be part of President Joe Biden's sweeping infrastructure plan to be detailed on Wednesday.

"No, that's not part of the conversation about this infrastructure bill," Buttigieg told CNN's Jake Tapper on "The Lead" when asked whether a mileage tax, which would charge people based on how many miles they drive, would factor into paying for the plan.

He added that "no," a gas tax would not be a part of the plan either. Buttigieg also reiterated Biden's prior pledge not to raise taxes on Americans earning less than $400,000.

The absence of both taxes to fund the infrastructure proposal marks a shift from Buttigieg's comments Friday, when he indicated during a CNBC interview that both ideas could be on the table.

Biden, who's already showing signs of nervousness over his casual destruction of some 10,000 American jobs from his flip-of-the-signature executive order canceling the Keystone XL pipeline, plus his moves to ban fracking, figured he didn't want to take any more loss of political capital based on Buttigieg's hipsterly gee-whiz blue-city bright idea.

Biden, after all, wants to spend money, and CNBC does note that he's going to have a hard time paying for his monster $4-trillion infrastructure bill, which will amount to one, two, many Solyndras for the leftist blue-city elites to get rich off of.

But his means is a bit sneakier than Pete's — he's content with taxing the poor indirectly, by taxing the rich, raising the corporate tax to a non-globally competitive 28% and too bad about all the lost jobs.  The rich will then create fewer jobs for the poor people (name the last poor person you got a job from), and if the poor people can't find jobs, well, too bad, blame Trump, and go on the government dole, becoming a government dependent, always handy for providing Democrats with a vote.

It's just the latest idiocy the sanctimonious failed mayor of South Bend, Indiana has laid onto people in his pathetic, wretched career, all premised on the prospect of failing upward.

The Los Angeles Times described his failings here:

The Greater South Bend area "has become more segregated between White and African American/Black residents since 2010," according to a forthcoming regional housing report prepared by South Bend and neighboring Mishawaka. (The report did not examine segregation data in South Bend alone, though the city is by far the most populous town in the metropolitan statistical area that was analyzed.)

The city also has "one of the highest foreclosure rates in the United States," with an eviction rate that is "extremely high," the report said. In South Bend, racial discrimination is the primary factor cited by tenants when making fair-housing complaints, bucking the national trend, where disability is the most common complaint, according to the report.

Nothing direct, you see — all unintended consequences easily blamed on Republicans.  In particular, Pete's propensity for taxing and spending is precisely what specially depresses economies in places like South Bend even as President Trump's broader reforms lifted the economy more broadly and in every place in Indiana that was not South Bend.  Electing a socialist will do that for you, and Buttigieg has gold-plated socialist credentials.

It just goes to show how out of touch with ordinary people Little Lord Fauntleroy, with his Marxist upbringing and his charmed, elitist education, really is.  He's running a gargantuan federal agency, he's set to administer some four billion dollars in government spending, and he doesn't have the faintest idea how his bad ideas affect ordinary Americans.  He doesn't represent them, so he would not know.  He represents himself, his ambition, and his elitist buddies, so too bad about the little guy, who he's confident will never notice.

His mileage tax idiocy should make for some impressive Republican opposition political ads at some time in the near future as this glib princeling of privilege seeks to climb the career ladder to higher office. 

Image: Gage Skidmore via FlickrCC BY-SA 2.0.

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