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Hearing Round-Up: Democrats’ Wasteful Infrastructure Spending and Job-Killing Tax Hikes

May 25, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Democrats’ wasteful infrastructure spending and job-killing tax hikes harm American workers, families, and small businesses, argued Ways and Means Republican Leader Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Ways and Means Republicans during a Ways and Means Hearing.


Rep. Brady (R-TX) kicked off the hearing by discussing how Democrats’ tax hikes hurt America’s jobs recovery and return to devastating Obama-era policies: “We cannot fund infrastructure on the backs of American workers. Even assuming the best long-term economic gain from infrastructure, America is a net loser with tax increases that slow hiring, hurt paychecks, and take America backward to the bad economic days of President Obama and Vice President Biden… No President has ever raised taxes on businesses to recover from an economic crisis.”


Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-FL) pointed out that infrastructure spending is a thinly-veiled tax increase on small businesses and working class families: “According to Rice University, some of the tax hikes proposed by President Biden will cost more than a million jobs in the first two years, and nearly six-hundred thousand jobs per year over the next decade. That is completely unacceptable.”


Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE) emphasized concerns that tax increases hurt small businesses and families: “The primary outcomes from [our tax subcommittee] hearing were bipartisan concerns that proposals like doubling the capital gains tax and repealing stepped-up basis would actually hurt family-owned farms, ranches, and small businesses at the absolute worst possible time.”


Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO) discussed how Democrats’ infrastructure package is mostly comprised of wasteful spending that harms our recovery: “Instead of focusing on bipartisan infrastructure initiatives, President Biden and Washington Democrats are more interested in delivering budget-busting Green New Deal proposals that will raise energy prices and kill American jobs. In fact, outlined in President Biden’s plan are policies to reward coastal elites, while delivering the biggest tax increase in generations.”


Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC) emphasized how tax increases could affect competitiveness of U.S. companies: “What I don’t want to see us do is adopt a whole lot of new taxes … things like doubling the capital gains rate, eliminating the stepped-up basis, raising the corporate tax rate, raising the individual tax rate, which would once again make out tax code uncompetitive.” 


Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ) pointed out the irony of Democrats’ tax hikes: “One thing I want to throw out is the incredible irony of the proposals of ‘we’re going to tax the wealthy, but then we’re going to turn around and give the wealthy a substantial list of the benefits.’ You must admit, it is a little insane saying that, ‘I want to raise your taxes but then I want to give you the tax credit for your electric vehicle, your solar panels, your battery walls, subsidize this, subsidize that.’”


Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-IN) added that Democrats’ proposals hurt American workers and destroy jobs: “Unfortunately Democrats have proposed raising taxes on all Americans as a way to pay for their so-called infrastructure package, the vast majority of which has nothing to do with infrastructure…The tax hikes will result in less investment in the United States, hurt our nation’s economic recovery, and destroy jobs for hardworking Americans.”


Rep. Darin LaHood (R-IL) objected to Democrats’ proposals to pay for infrastructure in ways that have nothing to do with infrastructure: “Today we are talking about a real diversion of the tax code, talking about raising corporate rates to fund infrastructure, changing the stepped-up basis, which would affect farmers and family run businesses, changing the estate tax, taxing capital gains. These have never been used to fund infrastructure, but we’re having a conversation about it. So these tax increases are really just being used as a justification for infrastructure and that’s concerning to me, particularly when we’ve never used this before.” 


Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) emphasized the need for real answers on the best way to fund infrastructure for local economies: “Instead of focusing on tax hikes that will reduce economic activity, we need to, and can be, looking at infrastructure solutions that will attract more private investment in our communities.” 


Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-TX) pointed out that Democrats’ so-called ‘infrastructure’ plan is really tax hikes in disguise: “The Democrat plan is to impose job-killing tax hikes on job creators and working families to pay for what they call ‘infrastructure.’”


Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA) raised concern about losing American competitiveness by upending the tax code: “Now we’re talking about doing things in the tax code that make America less competitive. We’re talking about doing things that once again will ensure that our companies will move their operations offshore. We’re talking about doing things that will cost American’s their jobs.” 


Rep. Ron Estes (R-KS) discussed the reality of how Democrats’ tax hikes raise taxes on every American, slash paychecks, and send jobs overseas: “This hearing is really about raising taxes on every American in order to pay for the Democrats’ socialist policies.”


Rep. Lloyd Smucker (R-PA) emphasized that there are better ways to fund infrastructure without taxes that burden small businesses and working families: “This tax-and-spend scheme is an irresponsible way of leveraging tax dollars to achieve the goals that we are trying to meet. There are certainly better ways to fund an infrastructure package besides burdening corporations and small businesses with more taxes.”


Rep. Kevin Hern (R-OK) raised concern about Democrats’ harmful economic policies threatening American competitiveness: “Biden’s recent proposals threaten to send us back in time by calling for harmful, anti-competitive tax provisions, such as increasing the corporate rate to 28%, a change that would eliminate at least one hundred and fifty-nine thousand jobs, reduce wages by 0.7%, and put us nine percentage points higher than the average rate of the world’s developed nations.”


Rep. Carol Miller (R-WV) noted that slowing our economy and killing jobs pushes America down the path to socialism, not rebuilding our infrastructure: “One thing that will not improve our infrastructure is the dangerous, job-killing tax hikes being proposed by President Biden. Slowing our economy and killing jobs, making private investment more prohibitively expensive, it actually pushes America down a very dangerous path towards socialism instead of encouraging American ingenuity, resourcefulness, and entrepreneurship.”