Washington, D.C.– Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding the House Republicans’ tax legislation. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:
While Democrats have spent the last two years lowering energy costs, lowering the price of prescription drugs, bringing manufacturing jobs to our shores, Republicans are doubling down on what they do best: pushing tax giveaways to large corporations and the ultra-wealthy.
A few years ago, the Trump GOP tax cuts proved to be a dud for our economy and a political loser for the Republican Party. We all remember 2017; they said this is going to help us win the election, and by 2018, they couldn’t even bring it up because we Democrats had made clear to the American people this wasn’t aimed at the middle-class or the working class, it was aimed at the very rich, corporate and individual.
But Republicans don’t learn from their mistakes apparently.
This morning the GOP-led House Ways and Means Committee is going to advance a sweeping array of new tax giveaways that reward the wealthy and the well-connected while leaving ordinary families in the lurch. This latest GOP tax scam feels like a bad rerun, where the biggest winners are giant companies, big oil polluters, and the highest, the very highest, income households.
After the Trump tax law blew a nearly $2 trillion hole in our national deficit, forecasters say this new Republican proposal would increase the deficit by another trillion dollars. Again, their proposal over in the House increases the deficit by another trillion dollars by objective forecasters.
Now, these are the same Republicans who just pushed our country to the brink of catastrophic default in the name of fiscal responsibility and deficit reduction.
And now, before the ink is even dry on avoiding default, the same Republicans want to blow another trillion dollar hole into the deficit. What hypocrisy. What hypocrisy. What hypocrisy.
First they say we’ve got to default if we don’t deal with the deficit. And then they come back and propose to blow a hole in the deficit by another trillion dollars so they can help the very, very most elite in the country.
Of course, Republicans only care about the deficit when it suits them. When the deficit gets in the way, Republicans preach the fantasy that their tax cuts will somehow pay for themselves and that the benefits will magically trickle down to the rest of the country. But facts are stubborn.
The economic reality of the past few decades shows that these Republican trickle-down claims are bunkum.
It’s been refuted over and over again. You know, I remember, Jude Wanniski and all these right-wingers, the Wall Street Editorial pages in the 80s, saying cut taxes and the deficit will go down. It didn't happen. Especially when you cut taxes on a rarefied few at the top of the income scale. So, it doesn’t work.
We all saw what happened the last time Republicans pushed tax cuts for the very, very elite, top, top economic end of America in 2017: there was no historic wave of economic activity. There was no trickle-down stemming from the huge benefits Republicans gifted the wealthy.
Instead, the Trump tax cuts translated to huge profits for shareholders. Trillions, record trillions, of dollars in corporate stock buybacks. We saw the vast majority of Americans reject these Republican policies when they went to the ballot box. We even saw Republicans afraid to talk about it as we got closer to elections in 2018.
So, if Republicans really want to help working and middle class families – if they really want to lower the deficit as they’ve claimed for years – they will stop pushing this irredeemably flawed tax package.