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Higgins Argues GOP Tax Bill Bolsters Income Inequality in America

Press Release

Date: Nov. 7, 2017
Issues: Taxes

House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee Vice Ranking Member Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) questioned the logic behind the GOP strategy of giving major tax breaks to corporations with the assumption more will trickle down to American workers.

During Ways and Means Committee debate about the GOP tax bill Higgins said, "We're told this is being done to allow corporate America to boost the annual wages of people between $4,000 and $9,000 for the average American household. That is absurd. So, if that was really your objective, why don't you bypass corporate America and just give workers a $4,000 to $9,000 tax benefit every year? Because that will increase wages, which will increase demand, which will increase economic growth beyond the anemic two percent that we've experienced over the last decade. So, let's bypass corporate America, and give the break directly to the American workers."

"American businesses today, have $1.9 trillion in cash sitting in U.S. Treasury bonds. If they wanted to give workers a raise, they have the cash to do it without this huge tax bill, which is a huge giveaway to corporate America."

"We have 150 American corporations, American businesses, who say they need a tax cut from 35% to 20%. One hundred-fifty of them pay between 0% and 10% in corporate taxes every single year. And 50 of those American corporations…have a negative tax liability. Meaning they get a rebate every year because of the loopholes that exist. This is not tax reform. This is a tax scam that's intended to take money from middle America and give it to corporate America unjustifiably."

Higgins, a staunch support of infrastructure investment and lead sponsor of the Nation Building Here at Home Act (H.R. 2329), argued instead of corporate giveaways, the economy would be better served by advancing investments in infrastructure, "Not one utterance in this bill about financing infrastructure. Which based on any objective analysis, we need to spend about $2 trillion. Well the last budget proposes to spend $200 billion over the next 10 years. We just spent almost $200 billion in the last 10 years rebuilding the roads and bridges of Afghanistan and Iraq, nations of 30 million respectively. And yet for a nation of over 300 million people, which could materially increase the economic growth and put people to work -- these jobs can't be outsourced -- we're spending $200 billion."