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Cindy Axne Demands Rich Pay Their Fair Share Days After Report on Colleague’s Tax Avoidance

• February 2, 2022 1:10 pm

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Democratic Iowa congresswoman Cindy Axne demanded that the rich pay their "fair share" in taxes just two days after reports broke that her New York colleague Hakeem Jeffries (D.) dodged thousands of dollars in property taxes by taking advantage of a subsidy for which he voted.

"We have a tax system that's letting too many people off the hook that should be paying, the wealthiest among us," Axne said during a campaign event. "It's not fair that folks in this room, that average everyday Iowans, are paying their fair share for those wealthy folks to use everything that we have, and take advantage of it, and not pay their taxes."

"The rich need to pay their fair share," Axne said.

The remarks were made shortly after a New York Post report on Jeffries revealed years of tax avoidance. Jeffries, the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, managed to pay just $213 a year in property tax thanks to a subsidy law that was passed while he was a member of the New York state assembly. Jeffries owns a condo in a Brooklyn building that includes affordable housing units, making him eligible for the tax break.

His condo is worth over a million dollars, according to real estate experts.

In addition to Jeffries's hefty congressional salary, his former law firm paid him almost $2 million in 2016 even though he hadn't worked there since 2012, when he entered Congress.

Axne did not respond to a request for comment on the specific target of her remark.

Jeffries is widely considered next in line to succeed Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) as House Democratic leader. Pelosi, who announced last week that she would run this year for a 19th term in Congress, is 81 years old.