Again and Again, House GOP Votes for Millionaires, Dems Vote for Middle Class

Yesterday, House Republicans had opportunities to restore fairness for our middle class and small businesses—yet again and again they chose to reward the wealthiest instead.

On the House floor, Democrats called for a vote on the Buffett Rule to ask the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share as we work to responsibly reduce the deficit.  House Republicans blocked the proposal—preferring to let the middle class pay the price.   

Wall Street Journal: “…Democrats said they backed Mr. Obama’s plan for an alternative minimum tax of 30% for people making more than $1 million. Known as the Buffett Rule, it was named after billionaire Warren Buffett, who has said his own tax rate is lower than his secretary’s…on Thursday, House Democrats unsuccessfully tried a parliamentary maneuver to take control of the floor to bring it up for a vote. Republicans voted down the effort, 234-179.

New York Times: “Rejecting ‘Buffett Rule,’ House Passes Business Tax Cut”

Instead, House Republicans then passed Leader Eric Cantor’s latest tax cuts for the rich and famous, a “gimmick” disguised as a job-creating small business bill.  And by the way, leaving American taxpayers with the $46 billion price tag.   

New York Times: The House measure is drawn broadly, allowing any company with fewer than 500 employees to shield 20 percent of domestic business income from taxation. That would apply to more than 99 percent of businesses, including most law firms and sports franchises, as well as partnerships like lobbying firms and hedge funds.  Representative Xavier Becerra, Democrat of California, said the socialite Paris Hilton would qualify, because she lists five employees in her Beverly Hills company…Much of the debate was on Democratic grounds: Who benefits? The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center estimated that 49 percent of the $46 billion in tax breaks would go to households earning more than $1 million.

The Hill: In a largely party-line vote, Republicans turned aside Democratic objections that the tax cut is a handout to the wealthiest, and that its $46 billion price tag is not offset with spending cuts or revenue.

And as House Republicans prepared to give away the store to millionaires, billionaires, and special interests, House Democrats brought forward a motion that would prohibit deductions for a long list of businesses that break the law and those that don’t deserve them.  Republicans again stood in the way. 

Roll Call: “Democrats used their motion to recommit to offer a proposal to prohibit pornographers, lobbyists, companies that outsource jobs, companies that violate the Iran Sanctions Act, “illegal businesses pertaining to drugs and prostitution” and golf courses and clubs that discriminate on the basis of sex or race from receiving the tax cut…The motion fell by a vote of 179-229.”

CBS News: “…an amendment that would have excluded certain small businesses from the tax break, including companies that violate the Iran Sanctions Act, companies outsourcing jobs, and pornographers, among others, also failed.”

Now, House Republicans must be held accountable this indefensible record.  

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