A big reason why President Donald Trump exists is thanks to corporate tax cuts. Sure, plenty of Republicans rationalized their vote for him by pointing to the Supreme Court, but the investor class—the only class who actually matters in Republican politics—supported him largely because they knew that his tiny hands were capable of signing a massive corporate handout. The Republican Party exists solely to transfer more wealth from the poor to the rich, and this push for “tax reform” is the best example yet. No matter how the Republicans try to spin this, the fact is that their plan to “reform” the United States tax code is to give even more money to those who have more than they will ever need. The good news is that very few people—Republicans or Democrats—are buying this farce.
Perhaps even more interesting is that only 16% of voters expect the bill to cut their taxes. 35% expect a tax increase. pic.twitter.com/L935zaw4oV
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) November 15, 2017
The House passed their version, and the Senate got their plan through committee, and if it passes the Senate, it will go into effect. Here are the ten worst parts of this “plan.”
1. The ACA Repeal Would Leave Millions Uninsured
— Steven Rattner (@SteveRattner) November 20, 2017
2. It’s One Big Giveaway to the Rich
Here’s who pays more and who pays less under the Senate GOP tax bill. Red bars mean you pay more.
Note that I’ve scaled the size of the bars to reflect how many households are in each group. pic.twitter.com/pdsHZHiYPG
— Michael Linden (@MichaelSLinden) November 18, 2017
3. Foreign Investors Get a Better Deal than Middle Class Citizens
You won’t believe this but it’s true. The Senate GOP bill gives a bigger tax cut to FOREIGN INVESTORS than any group of U.S. taxpayers. In fact, the bottom 60% is basically paying for the tax cut for foreign investors.
America First? Country first? Make America Great Again?
— Seth Hanlon (@SethHanlon) November 18, 2017
4. To Pay for These Tax Breaks, Medicaid Will Be Cut By $18 Billion
Orrin Hatch: “There are no cuts to Medicaid in this bill.”
Claire McCaskill: “Where do you think the $300 billion is coming from? Is there a fairy that’s dropping it on the Senate? The money you’re spending is coming out of Medicaid.” (via ABC) pic.twitter.com/Y0F1mv1DTp
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) November 15, 2017
5. It’s a Massive Giveaway to a Small Cabal of Wealthy
The estate tax (or death tax, as it’s called by shills who want to eliminate it) is a tax that tries to ensure that children of rich men like Donald Trump do not start out their lives with the same wealth which their parents ended theirs with. One estimate has members of the Trump administration netting $3.5 billion if the estate tax is repealed.
For reference: Last year, more than 2.6 million people died in the U.S. Of the estates filed with the IRS, just 0.2% were large enough to qualify for the estate tax. https://t.co/h5N1nuoM2z
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) November 18, 2017
6. There Is Almost No Help for Poor Families With Children
One of many reasons the R Senate tax bill makes me angry and disappointed. pic.twitter.com/QWfj77jGTx
— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) November 19, 2017
7. It’s Not Even Paid for—It Will Add between $1.4 Trillion and $2.2 Trillion to the Debt
— Jacob Weindling (@Jakeweindling) November 20, 2017
8. It Gives Mutual Funds a Tax Break it Doesn’t Give to Individual Investors
The provision would prevent investors from minimizing taxes, when they sell part of a position, by choosing the specific shares being sold. Instead, investors would have to sell their oldest shares first.
As first proposed, the change would have applied to fund companies as well as individuals.
But senators exempted fund firms after some of the largest ones, including Vanguard Group and Eaton Vance Corp., protested by saying the proposed change would tie their portfolio managers’ hands, make markets less efficient, and raise taxes on investors.
9. It May Open Up the Alaska Wilderness to More Drilling
Legislation opening up a portion of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for leasing cleared a key Senate hurdle this week, when the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved it on a 13-10 vote. The measure is tied to the budget process that Republican leaders are using to advance the tax overhaul, which means the bill would only need 51 votes – not the usual 60 – to advance in the full Senate. That means they can conceivably pass their legislation with just Republican votes.
10. To Comply with Senate Rules, Republicans End most Individual Tax Cuts, but Keep Corporate Tax Cuts Permanent
Senator Hatch’s amendment achieves this by setting most of the of the bill’s individual income tax provisions to expire after 2025. Only three parts of the bill would be permanent:
1. Large net tax cuts for corporations. The bill cuts the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent and sets an even lower rate on the U.S. taxes that multinationals would pay on their foreign profits. Other corporate provisions would raise revenues, but not enough to cover the cost.
2. Repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate. The revised bill includes a permanent repeal of the ACA’s requirement that people get health insurance or pay a penalty. This provision would generate $53 billion in annual savings by 2027, paying for about one-third (about 4.7 percentage points) of the bill’s 15-percentage-point permanent cut in the corporate rate. Repealing the individual mandate would leave 13 million more people uninsured, raise premiums for millions more, and cause uncertainty and instability in the individual health insurance market.
3. A slower inflation adjustment, the “chained CPI.” Another way the bill pays for its permanent corporate tax cuts is by adopting a different inflation measure — the chained Consumer Price Index (CPI) — to adjust tax brackets and other tax parameters every year. The chained CPI grows more slowly than the current inflation measure, so taxpayers across the board would pay slightly more, with the impact growing over time.
Jacob Weindling is a staff writer for Paste politics. Follow him on Twitter at @Jakeweindling.