Senate Democrats, In Contrast With President Trump, Unveil Major Infrastructure Investment Proposal – Dem Plan Would Roll Back Tax Cuts For The Wealthy To Fund Infrastructure And Create Millions Of Jobs

March 7, 2018

Democratic Plan Would Invest Billions In Repairing Roads & Bridges, Rebuilding Schools, Modernizing Water & Sewer Systems, Bringing Communities Universal High-Speed Internet, Renovating VA Healthcare Facilities, And Much More

After President Trump And Congressional Republicans Passed Tax Giveaways To Wealthiest Few And Corporations, Senate Dems Call For An End To Tax Giveaways And Instead Funding Real Investment In Middle Class 

Dems To GOP: It’s Time To Work Together To Fix America’s Crumbling Infrastructure

Washington, DC – Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today joined U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Tom Carper (D-DE), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) to unveil a $1 trillion infrastructure plan, paid for by rolling back Republican tax giveaways to corporations and the wealthy. The Senate Democrats’ proposal would invest billions to modernize airports and waterways, rebuild crumbling schools and VA hospitals, overhaul road and bridge repairs, equip rural communities with high-speed internet, revitalize main streets across the country, and more. After President Trump and Congressional Republicans passed their tax bill, giving away huge windfalls to the wealthiest Americans and corporations, Senate Democrats are calling for an actual investment in the middle class. Democrats said it’s time President Trump and Republicans work in a bipartisan way to help working families, not just the wealthiest few.

America’s infrastructure is the backbone of our economy. Our roads, bridges, sewer systems, high-speed internet access, and more impact everything from our schools, to the cost of our utility bills, to where our companies are headquartered and jobs are created. And yet, our nation’s physical infrastructure has been allowed to fall into a state of disrepair. Despite touting on the campaign trail that he would usher through a massive infrastructure bill, President Trump has failed to keep his word with middle-class Americans. The Senate Democrats said that he and Senate Republicans’ failure to work in a bipartisan way to craft a serious infrastructure bill, and instead working to pass a $1.5 trillion tax cut for America’s largest corporations and wealthiest individuals, is yet another broken promise to hardworking people.

As such, Senate Democrats today unveiled their proposal to invest $1 trillion in this country’s infrastructure and create more than 15 million jobs. It would do this by returning the Republican tax giveaways for the wealthy to the American people. Specifically, the plan would be paid for responsibly through the following five measures:

-          Return The Top Individual Tax Rate Back To 39.6%

o   The Senate GOP’s lowering of the top rate to 37 percent was nothing more than a tax giveaway to the super rich, and such a provision would increase federal revenues to pay for infrastructure improvements by $139 billion over 10 years.

-          Restoring The Individual Alternative Minimum Tax To 2017 Law

o   The AMT ensures that high-income earners cannot avoid taxes by abusing deductions and other loopholes, and returning it to 2017 law would not only ensure the top 1 percent pay their fair share, but it would also increase federal revenues by $429 billion over 10 years.

-          Restoring The Estate And Gift Taxes

o   In their tax bill, Republicans doubled estate tax exemption levels to $11 million for individuals and a whopping $22 million for married couples, a maneuver that benefited no one other than millionaires and billionaires. Using the $83 billion in federal revenues it would bring back over 10 years could pay for massive infrastructure improvements that would benefit middle-class families.

-          Closing The Carried Interest Loophole

o   Despite campaign promises to end the carried interest loophole, President Trump and the Senate GOP let it continue, which enables Wall Street high fliers to continue disguising their income as capital gains to avoid taxes. Closing this loophole would increase federal revenues by $12 billion over 10 years.

-          Bring The Corporate Tax Rate To 25%

o   Raising the corporate tax rate to a competitive 25 percent would allow American businesses to stay competitive without providing a massive windfall to special interests that results in stock buybacks and CEO bonuses being prioritized over hiring new employees and increasing workers’ pay. Before the Republican tax bill, many corporations supported a 25 percent rate as a fair tax rate.  Reversing this trickle-down economic policy would bring in $359 billion that could be put toward infrastructure improvements across the country.

 

According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, the U.S. must spend $1.6 trillion above current funding levels just to get its infrastructure to a state of good repair. The Senate Democrats said that this historic proposal would make a significant dent in that by investing just over $1 trillion in our country’s infrastructure. Senate Democrats said that by avoiding gimmicks and giveaways that reward few Americans at the very top, and instead focusing on meaningful investments that will strengthen the middle class, Congress could create 15 million jobs, fix America’s infrastructure, and grow the economy. The Senate Democrats’ plan would invest in the following programs:

-          $140 Billion to Repair America’s Roads & Bridges

-          $10 Billion to Expand the TIGER Program

-          $115 Billion to Modernize America’s Water & Sewer Systems

-          $115 Billion to Repair & Improve Public Transportation

-          $50 Billion to Modernize and Improve the Safety of America’s Rail Infrastructure

-          $40 Billion for a new Vital Infrastructure Program

-          $30 Billion to Revitalize Main Street & Promote Innovative Transportation

-          $62 Billion for Neighborhood Revitalization, Lead Remediation, & Affordable Housing

-          $50 Billion to Rebuild America’s Schools

-          $30 Billion to Modernize America’s Ports & Waterways

-          $40 Billion to Improve America’s Airports & Airspace

-          $25 Billion to Build More Resilient Communities

-          $80 Billion to Bring Innovation to America’s Energy Grid & Promote Clean Energy

-          $40 Billion to Provide Universal High-Speed Internet

-          $15 Billion for Construction on America’s Public Lands

-          $10 Billion for Tribal Infrastructure

-          $10 Billion to Address the Construction Backlog at VA Healthcare Facilities

-          $20 Billion in Innovative Financing Tools

-          $140 Billion to Ensure the Solvency of the Highway Trust Fund for the next 10 years

 

A copy of the Senate Democrats’ full proposal can be found here.

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