By Alison Counts
A recent proposal of a sugar tax by Philadelphia Mayor, Jim Kenney has sparked a controversy between the democratic candidates. The tax on soda is said that it would discourage people from buying as much soda, since soda consumption has been linked to obesity, diabetes and tooth decay. Hilary has also supported Jim Kenney’s proposal for the money from the tax be sent to fund a universal preschool for children.
But this may cause more economic despair then excitement. Lower-income Philadelphians, like other lower-income Americans, tend to drink more soda than their richer neighbors. That means that they may get stuck paying a disproportionate share of the bill.
While Sanders spoke his support of the universal preschool and overall children’s education, he believes this that would mostly affect lower income families is not what we need. Mr. Sanders also says Mrs. Clinton’s support violates her pledge not to raise taxes on those earning less than $250,000.
Mr. Kenney has mentioned that the soda tax could raise more than $400 million over five years, enough not only to fund the universal preschool, as well as having the ability to renovate other schools, parks, and libraries. The proposed Philadelphia tax would be 3 cents for every ounce of sugary drink sold by distributors, making it the highest soda tax proposed anywhere in the country. Soda tax proposals before have failed in New York State, San Francisco — and Philadelphia, twice. So far, the only American city to pass a soda tax is Berkeley, Calif.