Congressional Republicans are rushing to get their tax bill to President Trump’s desk before the end of the year. At the same time most Americans have clearly shown that they are not in favor of this tax bill, and for good reason.
The proposed tax plans in Congress are simply the first of two steps that will hurt millions of low- and middle-income Americans. The first step involves cutting taxes for the richest top 5 percent and major corporations.
The second step, however, entails budget cuts to vital programs that help millions of families and communities across the U.S. While the details of exactly the size and scope of the cuts isn’t immediately clear (beyond those that will be automatic due to sequestration — read more here), GOP leaders have stated publicly their intent to cut programs and services deeply. Here are just a few recent and clear statements around this intent:
“We’re looking very strongly at welfare reform, and that’ll all take place right after taxes, very soon, very shortly after taxes,” – President Trump
“We’ve got a lot of work to do on cutting spending,” – House Speaker Paul Ryan
“The only way you are going to deal with the debt is you have to do two things. … You have got to generate economic growth because growth generates revenue. But you also have to bring spending under control. And not discretionary spending. That isn’t the driver of our debt, … The driver of our debt is the structure of Social Security and Medicare,” – Senator Marco Rubio
Under this tax plan “we will be able to raise more revenues and if not, as a Republican, the answer would be less spending,” – Rep. Jeb Hensarling, Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee
“I have a rough time wanting to spend billions and billions and trillions of dollars to help people who won’t help themselves, won’t lift a finger, and expect the federal government to do everything.” – Senator Orrin Hatch
Luis A. Toledo is a Public Policy Analyst for the Budget & Tax Center, a project of the North Carolina Justice Center.