The Truth about the Senate Republican Tax Reform Bill

FACT: The Senate Republican tax reform bill will explode our country’s debt, adding nearly $1.5 trillion on the nation’s credit card — and that’s in the best-case scenario.

WHAT THIS MEANS: The bill will put our kids on the hook to pay for its exorbitant cost without substantially growing the economy. We need to have an honest conversation about what American families are getting for that $1.5 trillion, because that’s a really big bill to put on our kids’ shoulders. And it will have a huge impact on their futures. [CBO, 12/2/17]

With $1.5 trillion, there are so many better, smarter ways the Senate could invest that money that would actually support working families and stand up for our kids’ futures. With this same amount of money, the Senate could give every taxpayer making less than $200,000 per year a $9,000 tax cut, rather than disproportionately helping the wealthy as this bill does. Or the Senate could invest that money, in priorities such as finding a cure for Alzheimer’s and cancer, rebuilding our country’s degraded infrastructure, expanding opioid abuse prevention and treatment programs, or fixing the country’s pension crisis. All of these priorities will be crowded out by the Senate’s deficit financed tax bill.

  • The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget concludes that the real cost of the Senate bill could be $2.2 trillion, and debt would exceed the size of the economy in just over a decade. [CRFB, 11/15/17]
  • The drastic increase in the federal debt will likely require Congress to pay for it by reducing spending elsewhere. As a result, there could be to severe cuts to and the elimination of critical programs that middle income families rely on. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Republicans’ bill would trigger automatic spending cuts, including: [The Hill, 11/14/17]
  • Cutting $400 billion from Medicare that would take away health care from seniors. AARP opposes the bill.
  • Wiping out $20 billion from agriculture programs that farmers and ranchers depend on like commodities, livestock assistance, conservation, specialty crop research initiative, beginning farmer and rancher development program, rural energy for America program, and specialty crop block grants. Plus, because of these costs, the federal government risks making it unaffordable to do a Farm Bill next year. [Politico, 11/30/17]
  • Reducing Customs and Border Patrol operations that protect our borders and keep communities safe.
  • Cutting student loan assistance that enables students to afford college.
  • Slashing Essential Air Service, a vital federal program which enables North Dakota’s smaller airports to serve rural communities, support local jobs, and boost economic development. The program invests $4.2 million in Dickinson’s airport, $4 million in Devils Lake’s, and $2.8 million in Jamestown’s each year.
  • Eliminating federal oil, gas and coal payments to states. States currently receive 50 percent of the revenues from minerals extracted from federal lands in the state. These funds are used by states to pay for road, schools, firefighters, and other public services. For North Dakota, it would mean the loss of $40 million next year. [U.S. Interior Department]


  • 37 top economists from the University of Chicago said that the Republican tax reform bills would cause the U.S. debt to increase much faster than the economy would grow. [University of Chicago, 11/21/17]
  • The conservative American Enterprise Institute stated, “This tax bill is also terribly flawed. Its benefits are too tilted toward wealthier Americans. It would increase deficits and debt at a time when both are already high and headed higher. And the changes to business taxes are hardly constructed to optimize economic growth.” [AEI, 11/29/17]

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