The Corner

More on Rubio and Taxes

Senator Marco Rubio speaks at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, March 14, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

Here is the transcript of the tax discussion from The Economist interview,  by the way:

Rubio: You know at one point we proposed a corporate rate of 20.9% to be able to fully do what we wanted. We did the .9 just to show the absurdity of it, and it was a massive fight because at the end of the day there was still a lot of thinking on the right-of-center that Apple is happy and the big corporations are happy, they are going to take the money they are saving and reinvest it back into American workers when in fact they bought back shares, they will invest in automation, in productivity that way, but there’s a few of them gave out bonuses in the short term but there’s no evidence whatsoever that this was massively poured back into the American worker.

I still think there are a lot of net positives of tax reform, let there be no doubt. I do think a lot of small businesses will now expand and immediately invest. But that had less to do with the rate and more to do with the immediate expensing component of it. It had more to do with that than it did with the corporate rate. 

I was not a big a fan of slashing massively the taxes of multinational corporations who aren’t even American companies. We shouldn’t be discriminatory towards them, but we don’t have any special obligation towards them either. These are citizens of the world.

The problem is that growth as I said, if you’re a multinational corporation you may be growing but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s helping Americans. Your shareholders are from all over the world, your customers are from all over the world, your supply chain, and production chain may not even be in the United States. The idea that massive growth by some large entity that is a multinational footprint is going to somehow benefit Americans especially because they happen to be headquartered in the United States — 

The Economist: You are unhappy with the tax reform because of the cuts to the corporate rate?

Rubio: I have no problem with cutting the corporate rate, I had proposed a cut myself. I just felt that we could have cut it a lot, to 22 to 21 and use that extra point as a tax cut but instead of for the multinationals, apply it to working families making $50,000 to $60,000 dollars a year. It wouldn’t have changed their lives but it would have shown we care. We did some of it, but the fact that we had to fight so hard to achieve that showed me how far we have to go.

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