A recent AP story about how people are starting to see a bit more money in their paychecks reveals the scam at the heart of the GOP tax overhaul. One woman notes that she is now earning an extra $1.50 per pay period. I assumed that must be a typo, until the article explained that this amounted to $78 more per year. A man whose paycheck boost covers two-thirds of his increased healthcare cost enthuses, “I have heard time and again that the middle class is getting crumbs, but I’ll take it!”
Actually, the middle class is getting screwed.
Unstated in the article, or in the massive GOP snow job touting this “reform,” is that the wealthiest individuals and corporations will pocket the lion’s share—not just in dollars, but in percentages. According to NPR and the Tax Policy Center, households making $1 million or more per year will get an average tax cut of $69, 660, or a 3.3 percent increase in income. Those making under $100,000 will average a tax cut of just under $1,000, a paltry 0.1-1.8 percent increase. The trivial amounts with which the Republicans are attempting to buy off ordinary Americans end in a few years, whereas slashed corporate tax rates on wealthy companies are permanent. There’s also no mention that tax cuts for the super-rich are funded by targeting blue states, healthcare, and many other programs Americans depend on. These include Social Security and Medicare, which House Speaker Paul Ryan has already vowed to go after next. His rationale? To curb the deficit, which he and his cronies have just enthusiastically exploded by massively cutting taxes for millionaires and billionaires.
Speaking of Paul Ryan, he evidently saw the same AP story I did. He didn’t think $1.50 was a typo, though, or cause for horror. Instead, he saw it as something to celebrate, tweeting about it as a success story. Ryan deleted the tweet after being roundly attacked for it.
He may try to cover his tracks, but Republicans can’t erase the truth. Their motto is, “Let them eat crumbs.”
We shouldn’t swallow it.