Both parties are the same, eh? Read on. As President Obama and Democrats try desperately to close loopholes that allow corporations to flee the U.S. in order to avoid paying taxes, top Republicans Speaker John Boehner and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp are personally cashing in off of the unpatriotic loophole.
Richard Rubin busted Boehner and Camp in an article on Bloomberg which begins, “Two top Republican lawmakers profited from a corporate tax-avoidance maneuver that the U.S. Treasury Department is seeking to curb.”
Rubin goes right for the facts, noting that as Boehner and Camp obstruct policies to stop corporations from fleeing the country in order to avoid paying their fair share of taxes, they are both making money off of the companies that flee. They also both risk losing money if there is a crackdown.
While U.S. House Speaker John Boehner and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp have resisted calls for a crackdown on companies adopting overseas addresses to pay lower taxes, both have made money off one of the deals. They also have investments at risk of losing value because of government action.
Yes, this is legal, even though it clearly shouldn’t be. Both lawmakers offices told Bloomberg that the lawmakers weren’t “personally” involved, their financial advisers do it all, even as they actively seek to protect a deal that personally enriches them and makes no sense otherwise. We are to believe that the lawmakers never check their own portfolios, apparently. No matter the transparent denials, this is highly corrupt. And it is to be expected, after Republicans tried to secretly ditch the ethics committee in the House as soon as they took over. They make their own “rules”.
Rubin reported the details as the lawmakers made big money off of allowing corporations to unfairly lower their tax rate by leaving the country:
The two lawmakers reported the sale of stock in Covidien Plc within nine days of Medtronic Inc. saying it was planning a takeover, an announcement that sent Dublin-based Covidien’s shares near a 52-week high. The deal, one of several that have sparked a national debate over U.S. corporate tax policy, would put the combined company’s headquarters in Ireland and reduce its tax rate.
Rubin points out that Obama’s bill is retroactive, and would “penalize” the deal (Medtronic-Covidien) that both Republicans are making money off of. These two Republicans are very involved in tax policy, so it’s not as if they are even just random members of the House obstructing the closure of a loophole that impacts every U.S. taxpayer. They are the Foxes guarding the hen house.
Monday, Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-MI) took a flame thrower to Burger King for fleeing the country via a merger with the Canadian company of Tim Hortons. The merger was confirmed on Tuesday. Democrats refer to the trend of U.S. companies renouncing their citizenship and going overseas in order to avoid taxes as “inversions” (Democrats have to make everything as boring as possible so all but those with time to waste tune out). They should be named “desertions”.
These companies still take advantage of all that the U.S. tax base provides. This means that the average U.S. citizen, you know the “48%” that Republicans despise, are basically subsidizing corporate profits constantly now, not just when they fail. And Republican lawmakers in charge of obstructing attempts to close the deserter loophole are instead abandoning their country in order to fill their wallets on the backs of the average U.S. taxpayer.
It is Democrats who are trying to put an end to this practice. So while there are individually greedy, corporate Democrats just as there are Republicans, policy talks. When it comes to policy, only the Democrats are trying to keep some measure of actual representation of the people in the chambers of Congress.
Republicans are just corporate logos playing moderate business oriented politicians, when in reality they are greedily stuffing their own faces as their constituents starve. The non partisan Joint Committee on Taxation found that Obama’s proposal would save the taxpayers almost $20 billion dollars over ten years.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.