Congressional Republicans have just pulled off the biggest heist in American history – transferring trillions of dollars of wealth to the rich and profitable corporations at the expense of working and middle class Americans. By ramming this ill-considered legislation through Congress in a reckless manner, GOP members of Congress put partisanship over people and donors over constituents. Last-minute revisions designed to woo holdout Senators – including a change benefitting real estate moguls like President Trump – tilted the bill even further toward wealthy elites.
It is wrong to ask the poor, the working class, and elderly to pay for tax breaks for the rich and powerful, which is exactly what the Trump/GOP tax bill will do. The tax cuts will explode the federal debt by at least $1.5 trillion, laying the groundwork for an all-out effort to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. House Speaker Paul Ryan and Florida Senator Marco Rubio have already promised as much in recent public statements. Blowing up the debt for tax cuts, then claiming that there’s no choice but to cut benefits for seniors is the height of hypocrisy. As proof of Republicans’ intent, the 2018 GOP budget resolution slashes nearly $500 billion from Medicare and more than $1 trillion from Medicaid.
The bill’s repeal of the Obamacare individual mandate will result in 13 million Americans losing coverage, and an average $1,500 hike in health insurance premiums for older adults aged 50-64. Adopting the miserly “Chained CPI” inflation index for calculating tax brackets and deductions could easily creep into the formula for determining Social Security cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs), which would cost retirees thousands of dollars in the long run. Unfortunately, the pleas of advocates and everyday Americans demanding that Congress abandon this cynical legislation has fallen on deaf ears. But it’s a hollow victory for the GOP. While the perpetrators of the tax scam may be popping the champagne today, next November they surely will see that voters have declared the party’s over.