Several moderate Democrats are beginning to raise concerns about President Joe Biden’s new tax hikes in the $2 trillion infrastructure plan that was rolled out last week in Pittsburgh, and the margins in the House and Senate are razor-thin.
Under the tax hike proposal for the plan, the corporate tax rate would jump from 21% to 28% and raising the global minimum tax paid by corporations from 13% to 21%, among other taxes.
Let's find a bipartisan path forward to get an infrastructure deal done to help North Jersey's bridges and roads, and to get Gateway moving forward.
But, if there are changes to the tax codes that affect families? No SALT, no deal.https://t.co/d2HvP3Zz5T
— Rep Josh Gottheimer (@RepJoshG) April 3, 2021
There Are Real Concerns About Raising Taxes During A Pandemic
Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) is one of those moderate Democrats who are raising real issues about such a tax increase. “We need to be careful not to do anything that’s too big or too much in the middle of a pandemic and an economic crisis.”
Gottheimer also stated the importance of such a bill having input from both sides of the aisle and having bipartisan support. “This can’t just be jammed through without input and consideration from the other side,” he said.
Gottheimer and his fellow Democrat Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY) are also looking out of course, for their interests at home.
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Fox News reports that both have said that they would not be voting for any tax changes unless Democrats voted to restore the unlimited write-offs of state and local taxes (SALT) in New Jersey and New York.
The problem? Many on the left view it as a subsidy to the already-wealthy. Or as the left-wing Brookings Institution puts it, “The SALT deduction is a handout to the rich.”
Also joining with Gottheimer and Suozzi is Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), who also is opposed to the write-off cap, and Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME).
The biggest problem for Biden is that, should these Democrats vote against an infrastructure bill, it could doom the effort entirely.
Axios reports that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi can only lose three Democrats. The Senate, of course, is split 50-50, and West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin has said he won’t support Biden’s corporate tax hike to 28%.
“No SALT, No Deal!”
— Tom Suozzi (@RepTomSuozzi) March 30, 2021
There Is Actually Some Disagreement On Taxes Among Democrats
Over the weekend, former Michigan Governor and current Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm told CNN’s Jake Tapper that if Republicans did not cooperate with the infrastructure plan, Democrats could use the reconciliation process to push the bill through.
Tapper asked if Granholm and Biden would be OK with having a bill pass with zero Republican votes.
Granholm said, “We want to make it bipartisan. You know, ultimately, if that doesn’t happen, he is elected to do the job to win the future for America to invest in our future.”
If the bill were to pass by reconciliation rules in the Senate, that means only 50 votes are needed, with Vice President Kamala Harris being a tie-breaking vote. But again, Democrats can’t afford to lose a single vote in the Senate.
Asked if Dems will use reconciliation to pass infrastructure, Secretary Granholm tells CNN "That's not the preferred way. We'd love to get 10 Sens to come on board on the Republican side..but one way or the other I hope that they push it through, bc that's what the country needs”
— DJ Judd (@DJJudd) March 25, 2021
Highlights Of The Bill
Joe Biden has described his infrastructure plan as not only addressing the nation’s infrastructure, but also addressing issues such as climate change and racial inequality.
Some highlights include $621 billion for transportation, such as fixing 20,000 miles of rebuilt roads and repairs made to 10,000 bridges.
Also, $174 billion to go to subsidizing the purchase of electric vehicles, and the building of 500,000 electric charging stations.
Some $213 billion for renovation and outfitting of more than 2 million homes and housing units. There is also $111 billion for the replacement of lead water pipes and service lines.
And in addition to $100 billion to build new public schools and upgrading existing buildings, $10 billion will go to something called the “Civilian Climate Corps.”
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