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State of the Union
Mr. Obama's 529 brouhaha
Mr. Obama's 529 brouhaha

Rarely does a president flip-flop on an initiative presented in the State of the Union address as quickly as Barack Obama did this week. He reversed himself on 529 college savings plans on Tuesday, which was just seven days after his speech to the nation. Such a political miscalculation is instructive on any number of levels, the most obvious being that the difference between rich and middle-class is not easily defined. What Mr. Obama initially proposed was to end a major tax benefit provided by 529 plans, which shield earnings on investments from taxes on capital gains and dividends much like a Roth IRA. Some states, like Maryland, also provide additional tax incentives for 529s, but...

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