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Expand chart
Data: Internal Revenue Service, staff research; Chart: Axios Visuals

There's been a lot of talk about the proposal from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) proposal to raise tax rates as high as 70% on America's wealthiest citizens.

Why it matters: An American making $11 million per year filing as single would pay $4,365,687 in taxes under the U.S.' marginal tax code rather than $7,700,000, which would be paid if the tax rate were a flat 70%, as some have suggested. That's a difference of more than $3.3 million annually.

  • The difference for someone making an additional $1 million of income ($11 million instead of $10 million) under Ocasio-Cortez's plan would be about $330,000 in taxes.

Be smart: Here's what she actually said during her interview with "60 Minutes" on Sunday:

"You know, you look at our tax rates back in the '60s and when you have a progressive tax rate system, your tax rate, you know, let's say, from zero to $75,000 may be 10% or 15%, etc ... But once you get to, like, the tippy tops, on your 10 millionth dollar, sometimes you see tax rates as high as 60 or 70 percent. That doesn't mean all $10 million are taxed at an extremely high rate, but it means that as you climb up this ladder you should be contributing more."

A full plan would presumably have new tax brackets, but since Ocasio-Cortez only provides a couple examples in her response, we'll work with the current tax plan, cap the current highest tax bracket of 37% at $500,001-$10,000,000 and add a presumed tax bracket starting at $10,000,001 that's taxed at 70%.

  • Reality check: One could also assume that like in the 60s and 70s (and today), America's ultra rich would find ways to dodge much of that onerous tax bill should this highly improbable proposal ever become law.
  • Bonus reality check: Ocasio-Cortez has been a member of Congress for less than a week so maybe we can dial back talking about her tax plans for a bit.

Go deeper: Wealthy Americans are already exploiting the tax plan

Go deeper

Biden will reverse Trump's attempt to lift COVID related travel restrictions

Photo: Tasos Katopodis via Getty

The incoming Biden administration will reverse President Trump's last-minute order to lift COVID-19 related travel restrictions, Jen Psaki, the incoming White House press secretary, tweeted.

Why it matters: President Trump ordered entry bans lifted for travelers from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil and much of Europe to go into effect Jan. 26, but the Biden administration will "strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Jen Psaki said. Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Jan. 20 and Trump will no longer be president by the time the order is set to go into effect.

Dominion sends cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems on Monday sent a cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell over his spread of misinformation related to the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump and several of his allies have pushed false conspiracy theories about the company, leading Dominion to take legal action. It's suing pro-Trump lawyer Sidney Powell for defamation and $1.3 billion in damages, and a Dominion employee has sued Trump himself, OANN and Newsmax.

Off the Rails

Episode 5: The secret CIA plan

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer, Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 5: Trump vs. Gina — The president becomes increasingly rash and devises a plan to tamper with the nation's intelligence command.

In his final weeks in office, after losing the election to Joe Biden, President Donald Trump embarked on a vengeful exit strategy that included a hasty and ill-thought-out plan to jam up CIA Director Gina Haspel by firing her top deputy and replacing him with a protege of Republican Congressman Devin Nunes.

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