Why We Must Balance Washington’s Tax Code

Washington’s Tax code is upside-down

Washington has the most unbalanced, broken tax system in the country. Powerful special interests have manipulated the tax code by inserting tax breaks and special deals that benefit themselves and harm our communities. Our state’s combination of tax loopholes and special deals for the rich means the wealthiest among us get richer while regular working families pay more — as much as 6 times the rate the wealthiest pay. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Special interests rigged a system so those making the least pay 18% or more of their income toward state and local taxes, those in the middle pay 11%, and the richest pay 3% or less.

Our Current Tax Code is a Lose-Lose

Not only is Washington’s upside-down tax code deeply unfair for working families, but it directly impacts our ability to invest in our shared priorities. Washington is a great place to live, work, and raise a family, and when we prioritize investments in a just economy, world class schools, and affordable health care we can truly be national leaders. But right now, our broken tax code prevents us from making the investments we know lead to thriving communities, and places the greatest burden of funding those investments on our lowest-income families. Here in Washington, those making the least pay 18% or more of their income towards state and local taxes, while the wealthiest pay only 3% or less – so working families are paying six times as much of their income in taxes as the wealthiest do. 

We Can Work to Fix This

If we clean up the tax code, we’ll have more to invest back into the foundations that make our state so great. More investment in our communities means better schools, improved infrastructure, and quality healthcare. Together, we can balance our tax code.