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Economy shouldn’t have to rely on charity from billionaires, says Biden backer Pete Buttigieg

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The United States should not have to rely as much on charitable contributions from billionaires to help solve the nation’s economic challenges, Biden campaign surrogate Pete Buttigieg told CNBC on Thursday.

“It’s wonderful when there are these major commitments, generous commitments by individuals, but we’ve also got to ask how things got so unequal in the first place,” the former Democratic presidential candidate said on “Squawk Box.”

Buttigieg’s remarks came in response to a question about whether to tax charitable contributions such as the one that multibillionaire Warren Buffett just announced. The “Oracle of Omaha” on Wednesday said he would donate nearly $3 billion worth of Berkshire Hathaway stock. As of Wednesday’s market close, Buffett ranked No. 4 on Forbes’ list of the richest people in the world with an estimated net-worth of $67.6 billion.

Buffett has said he will give away nearly all of his fortune, with most of it going to a handful of philanthropic organizations including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and charities run by his three children. Since 2006, he has donated more than $37 billion, including the latest contribution.

Instead of taxing philanthropy, Buttigieg said it would make more sense for the U.S. to have […]

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