WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, issued the following statement after Committee Republicans moved forward their tax reform plan that would give permanent tax cuts to corporations at the expense of working and middle-income Americans.
“How hypocritical can the Republicans get? This so-called tax reform is a collection of tax cuts for corporations and higher-income families. It does not target middle-income and working families despite repeated comments from the Republican senators saying that it does. It blows a $1.5 trillion dollar hole in our debt – which seems to be okay with former deficit hawk Republicans. Republicans give with one hand and take and take and take with the other. They have filled this bill with opaque gimmicks to meet their legislative needs and bend the scoring to help themselves, but ignore facts that would run counter to their talking points. They make permanent the tax breaks for corporations but sunset any cuts for low- and middle-income families and smaller businesses so that in 10 years, working families will see billions in additional tax hikes while the big corporations are still protected. It isn’t fair. It isn’t right. It isn’t going to work and it will hurt our economy.
“On the substance, this so-called tax reform bill is bad policy. It’s built for partisan politics only. On process, it is even worse. There is no ‘regular order’ here. Counting previous hearings about tax policy as hearings on this legislation is a farce. There were multiple amendments – including a few of mine on economic development, infrastructure and even tax credits for individuals getting help for opioid addiction and misuse – that were praised by Republicans but voted down on partisan lines. Apparently good policy is bipartisan, which for Republicans means it doesn’t belong in this bill.
“My hope is that we can move beyond this wrecking ball of a bill and move back to a bipartisan place that can achieve true tax reform and not an excuse for destroying the Affordable Care Act, destroying our economy and raising taxes on middle-income and working families to pay for tax cuts for the super-rich and corporations. We need a tax reform plan that is meaningful to every American, not just the privileged few.”