Ending Tax Break for Ultrawealthy May Not Take Act of Congress

By:  Gretchen Morgensen

It’s only natural that Barack Obama, entering the homestretch of his presidency, would be concerned about his legacy. Judging from a recentinterview in The New York Times Magazine, getting credit for the actions he has taken on economic issues seems to be of special interest to him.

Mr. Obama expressed frustration that many middle-class Americans feel they’ve been left behind during his time in office. The wealthiest Americans, meanwhile, have become richer during the Obama years.

There is a lot about this problem of income inequality — and about the economy over all — that Mr. Obama cannot control. Still, there is something he could do right now to help narrow the widening gulf between rich and poor.

In one deft move, Mr. Obama could instruct officials at his TreasuryDepartment to close the so-called carried interest tax loophole that allows managers of private equity and hedge funds to pay a substantially lower federal tax rate on much of their income.

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