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Majority Of Global Investors Support Buffett Rule's Millionaire Tax: Poll

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GLOBAL INVESTORS BUFFETT RULE
Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett attends the Fortune Most Powerful Women summit at Mandarin Oriental Hotel on October 5, 2010 in Washington, DC. The majority of global investors support the "Buffett Rule," according to a Bloomberg poll. The measure would raise taxes on America's highest earners. | Getty

The majority of global investors support boosting taxes on households earning at least $1 million, according to a Bloomberg poll released Friday.

Sixty-three percent of global investors said they support the so-called Buffett rule -- named for billionaire Warren Buffett, who proposed raising taxes on the "super-rich" in an op-ed in The New York Times. American investors were less supportive than their colleagues around the world; forty percent backed the rule, according to the poll.

But the majority of American voters are in favor of taxing the rich. Nearly three-quarters of Americans said they supported the Buffett rule, according to a poll released earlier this week by the website Daily Kos. Two-thirds of Americans also support raising taxes on households earning more than $200,000, a recent Gallup poll found.

And A majority of Republicans also support the rule, according to the Daily Kos poll. Still, the partisan rhetoric surrounding the measure may tell a different story. After Obama proposed the Buffett rule earlier this month as part of a larger plan to cut the national deficit using a combination of tax cuts and spending increases, Republican leaders accused him of stoking “class warfare.”

In the op-ed, Buffett wrote that his tax rate is lower than that of everyone else working in his office. Buffett suggested raising tax rates on those making $1 million or more both as a way to “stop coddling” the rich and as a way to spur economic growth.

Still, some argue that even if the Buffett rule were to survive and become law, it would do little to curb the budget deficit. Daniel Indiviglio of The Atlantic wrote earlier this month that if tax rates on the rich went back to pre-Bush-tax-cut levels they would bring in 4.5 percent of the 2009 national deficit.

But many governments around the world think a Buffett rule-type law would help to solve their budget woes. France and England have boosted taxes on their wealthy, according to The New York Times, and Spain, Greece, Japan and Italy are considering doing the same.

European investors had the highest level of support for the Buffett rule at 78 percent, the Bloomberg Poll found, while 69 percent of Asian investors back it.

The Buffett rule may have less than half the support of U.S. investors, according to the Bloomberg poll, but it’s backed by one prominent American. Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons told MSNBC on Thursday that he wants the U.S. government to raise his taxes. The hip-hop mogul, who is worth an estimated $340 million, took a page out of Buffett's book saying in the interview: "All my employees -- every single one -- paid more taxes than I did."

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