Amid the Biden administration’s recession, Congress is reportedly planning to increase taxes. Democrats’ “Build Back Better” legislation, which would raise taxes to fund “green energy” subsidies, appears to be getting a second chance.
This legislation, however, contradicts advice even Democrats have repeatedly given: Don’t raise taxes during a recession. Republican Rep. Jason Smith of Missouri put together a list of times prominent Democrats have given the very advice they are now ignoring.
“If we’re in a recession … I don’t think Sen. Obama or anyone else is going to raise any taxes,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said going into the 2008 presidential election. “You don’t want to take money out of the economy when the economy is shrinking.”
Later that year, Barack Obama won his first presidential election, and the next year, he expressed agreement with Schumer: “The last thing you want to do is to raise taxes in the middle of a recession,” the then-president said.
Yet this is precisely what Democrats in Congress are now advocating. West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin has reportedly reached a deal with Schumer during the ongoing recession that would increase many Americans’ taxes.
Even Manchin himself said in 2010 that a recession was not the time for a tax hike. “I don’t think during a time of recession you mess with any of the taxes or increase any taxes,” Manchin said.
Manchin has now told Fox News’s Bret Baier that the bill would only close loopholes and not raise taxes, but according to Michael Shellenberger, the founder and president of Environmental Progress, the 15 percent minimum corporate tax in the bill would likely result in a tax increase for many individual Americans.
“It is standard economic practice to assume that companies would pass along at least some of their tax increase to employees,” Shellenberger said.
In fact, Congress’s own Joint Committee on Taxation found that there would would indeed be an increase, which would be even greater for ordinary American workers than for the wealthy. Recall that this is in violation of President Joe Biden’s repeated promise not to raise taxes on those making less than $400,000 annually.
As Shellenberger wrote: “A new study by the U.S. Congress’s nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation has found that not only would the legislation increase taxes, it would increase taxes by $11 billion more on Americans earning below $200,000 per year than on Americans earning between $500,000 and $1 million, in 2023. And the legislation would increase taxes by $3 billion more on Americans earning below $200,000 per year than on Americans earning between $200,000 and $500,000 per year.”
Regardless of how corporate media might try to spin it, the economy is in a recession, and Democrats are abandoning their own advice by attempting to raise taxes when America can least afford it.