Your Voice: Tax bill threatens stormy weather for working families

To the editor:

A chilly wind is stirring, and it’s not just winter gusts rippling over Lake Michigan. A huge tax overhaul barreling through Congress is threatening stormy years ahead for America’s working families.

Neither the House nor the Senate versions of the GOP vision will work well for most Michiganders, unless you count yourself among the lucky top five percent richest people in the state.

Hot off the press, a report by the Washington DC-based Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy’s probes how the Senate’s proposed tax plan would impact taxpayers across all states. It compares two years, in 2019 when the tax law would begin to go into effect, and in 2027, by which time the legislative changes envisioned in the bill will have been enacted.

The GOP tax plan doesn’t portend a healthy economic scenario for Michigan, or the nation. The top 5 percent of American households would benefit to the tune of about half of the tax cuts, or $750 billion. Far from being a tax bill “to help the middle class,” a new analysis by the Washington-based think tank, ITEP (the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy), reveals how both the Senate and House tax plans are cynically skewed.

The Senate bill benefits the top 1%, foreign investors, and huge corporations. It will create a reality in which one in every ten Americans will pay more not less in taxes, so that cuts can be delivered to one-percenters and big business. This is a tax scheme designed to benefit the already wealthy and theirs— presumably with the expectation that as a result, the GOP’s coffers will swell.
Here in Michigan, the tax cut turns out to be a plan for income redistribution to corporations and the very rich.

  • Under the Senate version of the bill, the richest one percent of Michigan residents will get the biggest boon from the proposed tax cut, both when it goes into effect in 2019 and when the whole plan is rolled out, in 2027 — and in the years in between.
  • Similarly, under the House tax bill, the richest one percent of Michigan residents will get the most financial benefit from the proposal. By 2027, this rarified group will have reaped nearly half of the benefit of the cut.
  • Meanwhile, more and more low income and middle class taxpayers in Michigan will face a tax hike through 2018 until 2017.

What’s good for the one percenters, billionaires, trust fund kids, and global corporations isn’t necessarily good for Michiganders.

Bobbi Ebsen
Farmington Hills