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MSNBC “MTP Daily” host Chuck Todd on Tuesday reacted to the United States brokering the “Abraham Accords,” a historic peace deal between Israel and Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.

President Donald Trump announced the deal, saying, “We’re here this afternoon to change the course of history. After decades of division and conflict, we mark the dawn of a new Middle East.

Todd pointed out that the deal is “a bit uncomfortable for a lot of observers” because it “seems so transactional.” He suggested Trump pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal “is what got these Gulf states on board to do this.”

“You know, Peter, this deal is a bit uncomfortable for a lot of observers to watch because it seems so transactional,” Todd told White House correspondent Peter Alexander. “It’s as if pulling out of the Iran deal is what got these Gulf states on board to do this, you know, to then recognize it. It feels like there is a lot of quid pro quos involved in this, that it isn’t something larger than that. Then again, sometimes Middle East diplomacy, the only way to make things move is through the transactional nature of the region.”

(h/t Newsbusters)

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New Jersey To Increase Tax On Millionaires In Order To Help Families Struggling From Coronavirus Pandemic

TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — New Jersey high income earners will soon be paying more in taxes to help some middle and low income earners stay afloat amid the coronavirus pandemic.

People who make more than $1 million a year will see a tax increase of just under 2%. In exchange, that money will help struggling families.

Gov. Phil Murphy announced Thursday morning he struck a deal with the Legislature to provide relief to middle and low income households by increasing taxes on the wealthy.

“We do not hold any grudge at all against those who have been successful in life, but in this unprecedented time when so many middle class families and others have sacrificed so much, now is the time to ensure the wealthiest among us are also called to sacrifice,” he said. 

WATCH: Gov. Phil Murphy Gives Update On Millionaire’s Tax & Rebates 

 Under the plan, those making between $1 and $5 million would see a tax rate increase of 1.78% — from 8.9 to 10.75.

People with incomes higher than $5 million already pay that top rate.

A single parent with income below $75,000 or married couples whose combined income is less than $150,000 with at least one child would receive a rebate check of up to $500.

“Five hundred dollars may be insignificant to some, but for those 800,000 families who will receive it, it goes a long way, particularly when people aren’t working or working reduced hours,” said Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver.

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Since he became governor, Murphy has been trying to push the millionaire’s tax through. It was rejected twice by the legislature but approved on the third try.

“I’ve resisted the millionaire’s tax for years. I had a problem with the timing,” State Senate President Stephen Sweeney said. “The pandemic hit, and things have changed, and we have to face the reality. A lot of families are hurting here.”

Murphy estimates this will bring in nearly $400 million for the state.

Some say the move could lead to an exodus of the wealthiest residents. Others say it’s only fair.

“I think there’s an idea it seems fair because if you make more… I feel like you can afford to give more,” one person told CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge

“If you have enough and you’re living well enough and somebody isn’t… I don’t think they should be taxed the same way,” New Jersey resident Nadya Mickail said. “I think it’s a good idea.”

“It all depends how they made their millions. If they made them in their own way and worked hard to get it, they should be taxed the same as us,” said John Bradley, who works in New Jersey.

If eligible, families can expect to get their rebate checks next summer.

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