Senate Republicans veered onto a new course for tax reform Thursday, and Colorado leaders were both skeptical and accusatory, as the upper chamber’s GOP leadership proposed delaying the corporate tax cuts the president wants and scuttling the laborious efforts of Republicans in the House.
Colorado Republican Party chairman Jeff Hays sided with the Senate Republicans “for introducing a bill that will ease the middle-class tax burden, and dared Democrats to disagree.
“We expect Senate Democrats to oppose this bill reflexively – but reflexes are not a higher brain function,” he said.
“Instead of kneejerk opposition, we hope Democrats will set aside their hyper-partisanship and work with Senate Republicans to bring middle-class America the tax relief we deserve,” Hays said.
U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, a Denver Democrat, accused Republicans of trying to put on a bum rush to jam through a politically charged bill without much debate, despite the long reach of its conclusions.
“This is a terrible disservice to the people we represent,” Bennet said. “The rushed product of this closed-door process is likely to be an attempt to lavish tax cuts on the wealthy at the expense of the middle class—leading to higher deficits and deep cuts in Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid. It’s past time for Republicans to put the brakes on this approach and work with us on meaningful and fiscally-responsible tax reform that invests in our families, our kids, and our future.”
Conversely, Sen. Cory Gardner, a Republican from Yuma, said he was excited about the first meaningful tax reform legislation in 30 years. He said the Senate was only at the beginning of the process.
“Lower taxes will mean bigger paychecks and result in Coloradans keeping more of their hard earned dollars,” Gardner said. “It’s time for Washington to get out of the way and let Americans spend their money how they want, not how Washington dictates.”
He said the code is too complicated and rigged toward those who can ferret out the breaks.
The Republican proposal would lower the corporate rate from 35 percent to 25 percent in 2019, instead of next year, as President Trump wants.
“Lowering the corporate tax rate will jumpstart the economy and will allow businesses to hire more workers and reinvest their earnings into their business operations,” Gardner said. “Without tax relief, I worry about the future of Main Street America. We know American workers bear much of the burden of a high corporate tax rate in the form of lower wages, but now we have the opportunity to fix this. We can lower the corporate tax rate that could result in an additional $4,000 in the pockets of the average American household. This will be good for small businesses and American workers.”
Rep. Diana DeGette, a Democrat from Denver, took on tax reform as it passed through the lower chamber in her newsletter released Thursday.
“Republicans have completely shut Democrats out of this effort, which will affect every American,” she wrote. “This one-sided approach is no way to govern; I urge them to embrace bipartisan cooperation.”
Content originally published by Colorado Politics on November 10, 2017.