Home Depot Co-Founder Issues Bewildering Defense of Low Taxes for the Super Rich

In an open letter published in Real Clear Politics earlier this month, Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus announced his endorsement of Trump and blamed Obama/Clinton style of government for low workforce participation, stagnant wages and stalled economic progress. 

Marcus wrote:

I have never seen our government as hostile to free enterprise, especially small business, as it is today. It is driving over-regulation, over-taxation, over-litigation, and over-spending. These “overs” are killing small businesses, which create the majority of new jobs in America. Politicians like Obama and Clinton, aided by the media and academia, have peddled a dangerous sentiment that government can provide for Americans better than the private sector. That’s not just false, it’s likely the nexus of Trump’s massively popular slogan, “Make America Great Again.” We saw it first hand. The vast majority of early Home Depot associates did not have a college education. But they worked hard and were paid with salaries and stock options. Those options made many people wealthy, and fueled our robust growth.

Home Depot is set to grow at around 5% in sales this year, but its co-founder is terrified that this positive economic outlook could quickly turn due to the potential impact of another Obama in the White House. 

“Who’s going to bail us out? I’m concerned about my family. I want my family to survive," Marcus said just before the 2012 election. Did we mention this guy is worth over $3 Billion and is one of the top 200 richest people in the United States?

Marcus isn't a central part to Home Depot anymore though; he retired from the company in 2002. However, since then he has remained vocal about "how changes, many at the government level, have made it so he'd never be able to start and grow a business today, blaming government regulations and overreach," as KEPR described

"I actually had to go to California to find a banker who would give us a five and a half million dollar line of credit. Today under Dodd Frank [Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed in 2010 in an effort to alleviate the 2008 financial crisis] he wouldn't even open the door to me he couldn't do it," Marcus insisted today. 

Last September, Marcus told Fox Business he was a great believer in a flat tax, and seemed fairly baffled by why the wealthy should pay more. When asked what he thinks the 1%, like himself, should pay in taxes, he responded:

Everybody should pay an amount... When the 1% make a lot of money, they buy all the cars and boats that they need, but after that they invest. And what do they invest in? They invest in businesses, they invest in stocks, they invest in different thing and all of those things create jobs.

That's hopeful, at least.


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