A group of protesters gathered in front of Ohio Congressman Mike Turner’s Dayton office Friday to call for the passage of a so-called “Robin Hood tax.” The demonstration is one of several across the country timed with the anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination in 1968.
The protesters wore green hats with feathers, Robin-Hood style, and they represented National Nurses United, the AFL-CIO, and a grassroots group called the Miami Valley Full Employment Council. The groups are calling for a new federal tax that would take a half a percent of every Wall Street transaction, mainly stock and bond trades.
Chuck Morton with the AFL-CIO says it’s a way to take from the rich and give to the poor.
“The Robin Hood tax won’t cost the rich people hardly anything, and it would do so much to help our country,” he says. “We’re all behind the business owners to make money, but not at the expense of the workers.”
Supporters say hundreds of billions raised by the financial tax could then go into programs to help the poor. The Robin Hood tax has been introduced in Congress as HR 1579, sponsored by Congressman Keith Ellison of Minnesota, but Congressional support is pretty tepid.
In an emailed response, Congressman Turner, a Republican representing the 10th district, says he believes raising taxes during economically difficult times is bad for growth. “My efforts remain focused on growing jobs and retaining the manufacturing, defense industry and high tech jobs in the region,” he said through a media contact.