ECLECTIC RANT: GOP tax overhaul: more Help for the rich

Ralph E. Stone
Friday December 22, 2017 - 01:29:00 PM

The GOP finally got their tax bill -- touted as tax reform, But was it a "win" for the Republicans, and if it was, what did they win? A Gallup poll showed that only about 29% of American approve of the tax bill while 56% disapprove and 16% have no opinion.  

A December 17, 2017, NBC/WSJ poll showed that 50% of registered voters say they prefer a Democratic-controlled Congress, versus 39% who want Republicans in charge. This raises the question for Republicans: When you are down by large numbers in polling against Democrats, why did you push a tax bill favored by only 29% of voters? This seems a strange strategy to win the midterm elections. And Republicans haven't satisfactorily answered why the need for such large tax cuts with a relatively strong economy, unemployment down, and a massive government debt? 

Republicans will now have to spend 2018 selling the short-term relief for the tax cuts to the public, and hope that people feel the impact before the elections. The bill is certain to provide parents some immediate relief from the burden of taxes, but will likely lead to a tax increase for most middle-class families in the long term. By 2027, only families earning $100,000 or more will see any real tax cuts, with two-thirds of middle-class households actually seeing their taxes increase.  

The Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that repealing the individual mandate would reduce federal deficits by about $338 billion over the 2018โ€“2027 period and increase the number of uninsured people by 4 million in 2019 and 13 million in 2027. The individual mandate requires most U.S. citizens and noncitizens who lawfully reside in the country to have health insurance meeting specified standards and that imposes penalties on those without an exemption who do not comply.  

Democrats, on the other hand, will have to focus on who really benefits from this tax bill -- Donald Trump and his family, the other wealthy, and large corporations It will take some time before the large tax cuts for the rich and large corporations fail to "trickle down" to ordinary folks. And unfortunately, voters may not link this tax bill to spending cuts on vital programs in health care, education, retirement, and social services that will inevitably come to make up for the estimated $1.4 trillion in net deficits over a decade. 

Fareed Zakaria of The Washington Post summed up the GOP tax bill nicely, "Those who vote for this tax bill โ€” possibly the worst piece of major legislation in a generation โ€” will live in infamy, as the country slowly breaks down." Instead of draining the swamp, by passing this legislation the Republicans are further polluting the swamp. 

Remember though, the tax bill will not affect 2017 taxes. Hopefully, those who voted for this tax bill will pay dearly in the midterm elections. Now that would be a real win for this country.