Manchin Reportedly Outlines Demands for Democrats’ Climate Change, Child Tax Credit Plan

Senator Joe Manchin III

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia reportedly opposed two pieces of his party’s spending package as negotiations over its price tag and reach continue to stall.

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia’s opposition reportedly relates to the Democrats’ climate change and child tax credit provisions of the budget proposal. While the majority of his party lauded both programs, the 50-50 Senate means that any one Democratic senator could tank the bill, giving Manchin veto-like power while representing a rural, coal-producing state that voted for former President Donald Trump by almost 40 points in 2020.

Multiple reports surfaced Friday suggesting that the Clean Electricity Payment Program would likely be scrapped from the bill due to Manchin’s objections, part of Democrats’ attempt to fight climate change. Those backing the program, which would provide incentives for clean energy use while implementing fines and penalties for organizations continuing to rely on fossil fuels, see it as a fundamental piece of the Democrats’ agenda and key to reaching President Joe Biden’s goal of reducing U.S. emissions by 50% of what they were in 2005 by 2030.

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Democrats’ Budget Set to Include Global Minimum Tax, Treasury Secretary Says

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Sunday that she is confident that the Democrats’ budget will include a global minimum tax for corporations just days after nearly 140 countries endorsed the measure.

“I am confident that what we need to do to come into compliance with the minimum tax will be included in a reconciliation package,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told ABC News on Sunday. “I hope that it will be passed and we will be able to reassure the world that the United States will do its part.”

Though the United States and 135 other countries signed the agreement, each nation must pass its own legislation to enact the minimum tax rates. Democrats are currently crafting the budget, a spending package that would reshape the social safety net, but the process has slowed by disagreements between the party’s moderate and left wings.

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Republican Leaders Push Back Against Global Business Tax

Mike Crapo and Kevin Brady

Republican lawmakers are pushing back against the Biden administration’s plan to join a global compact implementing a tax on U.S. corporations regardless of where they operate.

One hundred and thirty six136 countries agreed Friday to implement a global business tax, and G-7 finance leaders agreed to the plan Saturday. President Joe Biden and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen praised the plan.

Proposed by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental economic organization, the global tax is necessary to respond to an “increasingly globalized and digital global economy,” OECD said.

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Commentary: Bearing the Tax Burden of the Biden Administration

Joe Biden

As congressional Democrats push a $3.5 trillion social spending package, everyone is wondering: “How are we going to pay for that?” To President Joe Biden, the answer is simple: raise taxes.

Included in Biden’s proposed tax plans — erroneously named the American Families Plan — are hikes in personal income tax and capital gains tax rates. The plan would raise the top marginal income tax rate from 37 percent to 39.6 percent and reclassify long-term capital gains and qualified dividends as ordinary income for those with taxable income above $1 million, resulting in a top marginal tax rate of 43.4 percent, according to the Tax Foundation.

Despite the frustration (or excitement) that Americans have towards Biden’s income and wealth tax proposals in the midst of an economic recovery, Americans should be paying closer attention to his other proposals, the American Jobs Plan and the Made in America Tax Plan.

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Commentary: The Treacherous Road to Runaway Inflation

In January, 2001, America had a balanced budget, low debt, and was at peace. Here, briefly, is what lay ahead: war, financial crisis, civil unrest, massive growth of the federal government, and now severe inflation.

Never in the history of America has our government in its ineptitude created such a false economy, risking hundreds of years of hard work on unsound and unworkable economic policies. The Founders wisely relied on dispersion of power. They knew there would be dishonest and incompetent politicians but, in this case, the entire government is infected with deceptive leaders.

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Commentary: The Biden Inflation Tax, Made Clear in One Chart

Joe Biden walking with "American Jobs Plan" sign

What is all this “Biden inflation tax” talk really about? What is the actual effect of inflation on the lives of real people? 

Well, below is a chart that compares yearly wage and inflation rates for each month from 2017 through July of this year using Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Wage rates are in blue and inflation (as measured by the consumer price index) is in red. When blue is on top, as it was during the entire Trump administration, workers’ wages are beating inflation and their standards of living are improving. When red is on top, they’re not.

While President Biden claims that it is “indisputable” that his jobs plan “is working,” this chart unequivocally shows that it is not, at least not for American workers. Rather, inflation is surging, more than wiping out any wage gains those workers might have experienced.

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Federal Court Sides with Biden’s Eviction Moratorium, for Now

Eviction Notice

A federal judge in Washington, D.C., ruled Friday against a challenge to President Joe Biden’s latest eviction moratorium.

U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich denied a request from the Alabama and Georgia association of Realtors to overturn an eviction moratorium from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The 60-day order bans landlords from evicting tenants, even if they do not pay rent, citing concerns over the spread of COVID-19.

“About half of all housing providers are mom-and-pop operators, and without rental income, they cannot pay their own bills or maintain their properties,” National Association of Realtors President Charlie Oppler said. “NAR has always advocated the best solution for all parties was rental assistance paid directly to housing providers to cover the rent and utilities of any vulnerable tenants during the pandemic. No housing provider wants to evict a tenant and considers it only as a last resort.”

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Commentary: Don’t Be Fooled by the Bipartisan, ‘Paid For’ Infrastructure Bill

Capitol building looking up, blue sky in background

Over the course of the pandemic, federal overspending has exploded even by Congress’s lofty standards. While trillion-dollar deficits were a cause for concern before 2020, spending over just the last two years is set to increase the national debt by over $6 trillion. It’s bizarre, then, that the only thing that members of opposing parties in Congress can seem to work together on is fooling the budgetary scorekeepers with phantom offsets for even more spending.

In total, the bipartisan infrastructure deal includes around $550 billion in new federal spending on infrastructure to take place over five years. Advocates of the legislation claim that it is paid for, but they are relying on gimmicks and quirks of the budget scoring process to make that claim.

Take the single biggest offset claimed — repurposing unused COVID relief funds, which the bill’s authors say would “raise” $210 billion (particularly considering that at least $160 billion have already been accounted for in the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) baseline). Only in the minds of Washington legislators does this represent funds ready to be used when the national debt stands at over $28 trillion.

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Senate Fails to Wrap Up Infrastructure Bill After Talks to Expedite Process Collapse

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer set up a critical vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill Saturday after talks to expedite the process fell apart late Thursday.

Both Republicans and Democrats engaged in marathon talks Thursday in a bid to vote on a package of amendments and to advance the sweeping public works package. Doing so, however, required approval from all 100 senators, and Tennessee Republican Sen. Bill Haggerty refused to go along even as his Republican colleagues urged him to do so.

In a statement, Hagerty attributed his objection to  the Congressional Budget Office’s estimation that the bill would add $256 billion to the national debt over 10 years.

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Newt Gingrich Commentary: The Higher Inflation and Bigger Debt Act

United States currency

The $3.5 trillion spending bill set up to follow the $1.1 trillion infrastructure bill (which has little to do with infrastructure) should be called what it really is: The Higher Inflation and Bigger Debt Act.

The Democrats would like you to believe it is only a reconciliation bill. This is vital to them because a reconciliation bill only takes 50 senators and the vice president to pass the U.S. Senate.

However, this additional $3.5 trillion comes after trillions of emergency spending prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Consider what the Congressional Budget Office has written about the fiscal situation before the $1.1 trillion and $3.5 trillion bills are passed:

Here is what the Congressional Budget Office forecasts (not counting Biden’s enormous spending plan): 

“By the end of 2021, federal debt held by the public is projected to equal 102 percent of GDP. Debt would reach 107 percent of GDP (surpassing its historical high) in 2031 and would almost double to 202 percent of GDP by 2051. Debt that is high and rising as a percentage of GDP boosts federal and private borrowing costs, slows the growth of economic output, and increases interest payments abroad. A growing debt burden could increase the risk of a fiscal crisis and higher inflation as well as undermine confidence in the U.S. dollar, making it more costly to finance public and private activity in international markets.”

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U.S. Set to Hit Debt Ceiling Within Four Months, Congressional Budget Office Estimates

The federal government is on track to reach the statutory debt limit in the fall, which would trigger a government shutdown, according to a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimate.

The U.S. is projected to reach the debt ceiling of $28.5 trillion by October or November, a CBO report released Wednesday stated. If Capitol Hill lawmakers don’t reach an agreement on raising the limit higher, the government could undergo its third shutdown in less than four years.

“If the debt limit remained unchanged, the ability to borrow using those measures would ultimately be exhausted, and the Treasury would probably run out of cash sometime in the first quarter of the next fiscal year (which begins on October 1, 2021), most likely in October or November,” the CBO report said.

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Over 100 Countries Agree to Back Global Minimum Corporate Tax

A view of the North entrance of the U.S. Treasury Building in Washington D.C.

A total of 130 nations representing more than 90 percent of global GDP have agreed to a global minimum corporate tax, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announced Thursday.

The tax, proposed by Yellen and the Biden administration during the G7 conference, would establish a minimum corporate tax rate across all participating countries to prevent corporations from avoiding taxes by incorporating offshore, according to Barron’s. The plan is also intended to prevent countries from competitively lowering their tax rates to attract investment, according to a Treasury Department statement.

“For decades, the United States has participated in a self-defeating international tax competition, lowering our corporate tax rates only to watch other nations lower theirs in response,” Yellen said in the statement.

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Commentary: It is Time to Fight for the Rights of Independent Businesses

As a very young man, I was fortunate enough to start my own company out of my apartment using a small amount of investment capital from friends and family. Over time, that business grew to have over 6,000 employees and revenues in excess of $2 billion. Over nearly a 40-year span, my team and I built what some would consider a remarkable track record, as measured by both sales and profits.

Because of my experience growing that business, I feel a special kinship with small, privately owned businesses and their owners. I also come from a middle-class background, one that shaped me into the person I am today. It is through both the lens of entrepreneur and member of the middle-class that I look through when reflecting upon this Independence Day.

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Commentary: Making Sense of the Post-Pandemic Economy

Guy on phone with stocks on computer screen

Are you having a hard time understanding why the housing market is heating up, and why the cost of essentials such as milk, eggs, and gas is climbing? Are you in the market for a used car? Then you know how expensive those are right now. And why can’t businesses find employees, yet millions remain unemployed? Economists agree the recovery isn’t like anything we’ve seen before. That’s because we’ve never had a situation before where the heavy hand of government shut down private enterprises on a nationwide scale. The market distortions are enormous. As states reopen, there is a herky-jerky feel to the economy that has many people unsettled.

Former Federal Reserve vice chairman Alan Blinder wrote in the Wall Street Journal recently, “the recovery is not linear. Rather, it is proceeding in fits and starts. Sales of physical goods, for example, dipped only briefly when Covid hit, recovered quickly, and are now well above their pre-pandemic levels. In stark contrast, businesses that deliver personal services, such as restaurants and hotels, suffered a devastating depression and are still below their pre-pandemic levels.”

By far the most uneven outcome so far since the economy crashed in spring 2000, besides the 7.6 million fewer jobs compared to pre-pandemic levels, has been inflation, which is up 5 percent the past 12 months.

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Commentary: Tax All Foundations and Endowments Now

Yale University

If there were trillions of dollars socked away in convenient vehicles to avoid taxes and benefit the ultra-elite should we not tax them? Are they not fair game in a just system of taxation, where the little guy and the middle class have to pay up—or else? 

The largest endowments, mainly universities indoctrinating students in social justice, wokeism, and class warfare, pay absolutely no taxes. 

The big foundations, promoting radical left-wing activism, likewise pay no taxes. 

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‘Dark Stores’ Squeeze Michigan City Tax Revenue

Closed store entrance

Vacant big box stores in Michigan become tax-reducing boons to retail companies statewide when those establishments have property assessed at rates sometimes 50% lower than previous rates.

This is known as a “dark stores” strategy, which often leaves local taxpayers to foot the tab.

An S&P report released Thursday found the strategy is employed nationwide.

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Commentary: New York and New Jersey Are Among the Top 10 States Where Residents Pay the Highest Lifetime Taxes

Tax withholding forms

In the mood for a depressing statistic? A new report from the financial services firm Self concludes that the average American will pay an astounding $525,037 in taxes over their lifetime—roughly 34 percent of their lifetime earnings. 

But the numbers aren’t uniform across the country; they vary wildly from state to state. Based on taxes on earnings, spending, property, and cars, here are the 10 states where residents pay the highest taxes over a lifetime.

1. New Jersey

Topping the list is New Jersey, where residents will, on average, owe an astounding $932,000 in taxes over their lifetime. That’s nearly 50 percent of their typical lifetime earnings!

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Biden Administration Proposes ‘More Realistic’ 15 Percent Global Corporate Tax Rate

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, joined by White House staff, participate in a virtual bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz)

The Biden administration proposed a minimum global corporate tax rate of 15%, but said it hoped world leaders would negotiate a more “ambitious” minimum rate.

Treasury Department officials proposed the 15% minimum corporate tax rate during an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) meeting on taxation Thursday. The meeting marked the initial discussions over a global minimum rate between nations after the Treasury Department had previously pushed for such a tax to stop the global “race to the bottom.”

“Treasury proposed to the Steering Group that the global minimum tax rate should be at least 15%,” the department said in a statement Thursday. “Treasury underscored that 15% is a floor and that discussions should continue to be ambitious and push that rate higher.”

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Commentary: Biden’s Capital Gains Tax Plans Are a Lose-Lose Proposition

There will always be munis. Income from municipal bonds typically enjoys tax-free status at the federal level and in the issuing state. Conversely, when investors put wealth to work in a startup, private corporation, or public company, they face a capital gains tax penalty if their investment bears fruit. If a home run, that penalty becomes enormous.

Imagine that. Investors who subsidize the growth of government largely avoid taxation. But if they back an innovative corporation, or rush a distant future into the present through an intrepid investment with a visionary entrepreneur, a major IRS bill awaits.

Worse, the cost of prescient investing may soon increase. Seemingly in a bid to placate his ravenous left flank, President Biden has announced a proposal to nearly double the federal penalties on savings and investment to 43.8%.

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Michigan State Administrators Project $1.24 Billion Tax Shortfall for 2020

Michigan’s General Fund and School Aid Fund tax revenues dropped $1.24 billion since January 2020, according to figures released Friday by state administrators and fiscal analysts.

The latest state consensus revenue estimating conference also projected an $84 million shortfall for 2021.

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Pocket Vetoes Meijer Tax Break, Property Tax Deferment for Hard Hit Businesses; Industry Leaders Want Answers

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday declined to sign two bills into law, exercising a “pocket veto” on legislation that would have given a tax break to Meijer and allowed businesses hit hard by COVID-19 to defer summer 2020 property taxes.

Whitmer vetoed SB 1153, which lawmakers said aimed to give Meijer a tax break on sales and use property taxes on automated consumer goods sorting systems.

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Michigan Residents Pay $4,040 Per Capita in Key State Tax Levies, Study Finds

Michigan residents pay 8.47% of their income per capita toward property, income and sales taxes – or $4,040 per person – according to a new study examining tax burdens in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The share of income paid by Michigan residents for these three taxes represented the 25th highest state tax burden among the 50 states and Washington, D.C., the HireAHelper website reported. The state’s residents paid 3.07% of their income on property taxes, according to the website, which provides moving services.

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Commentary: Taxing Workers for Staying Home Is a Policy Rooted in Envy

Ever since the beginning of the pandemic, working from home is the new normal.

In 2018, just 5.4 percent of the US’s working population worked remotely. By mid-2020, it had turned into reality for 56 percent of the workforce. While not all workers forced to stay home were quick to welcome the change, many learned to enjoy it over time. With state governments beginning another round of lockdowns, it isn’t shocking to see many companies choosing to carry on with remote work.

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Hunter Biden Says He’s Being Investigated for Possible Tax Crimes

Federal prosecutors in Delaware are investigating Hunter Biden for potential tax crimes, he said in a statement issued Wednesday through his father’s presidential transition team.

“I learned yesterday for the first time that the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware advised my legal counsel, also yesterday, that they are investigating my tax affairs,” Biden said in the statement.

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Biden Pledges to Hike Taxes to Bush Administration Levels

President-elect Joe Biden in a Wednesday interview said “there’s no reason why” his administration shouldn’t raise both corporate and individual income taxes to levels maintained during former president George Bush’s administration.

Biden insisted “everybody pairs their fair share” in taxes during his presidency, and suggested a nearly 40% rate for those in the top bracket, which he said was commonplace during the Bush era, in an interview with the New York Times.

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Biden’s Gun Registration Tax Could Cost Firearms Owners Billions

President-elect Joe Biden’s proposed firearm tax could cost gun owners upwards of $30 billion to keep the weapons they already possess, according to The Washington Free Beacon.

Biden plans to mandate both taxation and registration of so-called “assault weapons” and high-capacity magazines under the National Firearms Act (NFA), which requires a $200 fee per item, according to the former vice president’s campaign website. Around 20 million rifles and 150 million magazines would be taxable, leading to a total cost to U.S. gun owners of over $34 billion, according to the Free Beacon.

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Reports: Biden’s Tax Plan Would Increase Taxes Across the Board, Estimates Vary by How Much

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s proposed tax increases of nearly $4 trillion over the next 10 years, if passed, “would be the highest in American history – indeed, in world history,” an analysis of his plan determined.

Lew Uhler, founder and chairman of the National Tax Limitation Committee and National Tax Limitation Foundation (NTLF), and Peter Ferrara a senior policy adviser to NTLF, made that conclusion in a new report published by The Hill.

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Meshawn Maddock Commentary: Joe Biden’s Tax-and-Spend Agenda Is a Declaration of War on Middle-Income Americans

America’s working families need allies, not obstacles. 

As a mother and a Michigan small business owner, I vividly recall the anemic “recovery” we experienced under the Obama-Biden administration, which increased regulatory costs to a historic high of nearly $2 trillion a year — a tab paid in large part by hard working entrepreneurs like me. 

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Whitmer Signs ‘Pay As You Stay’ Law That Helps Michigan Homeowners Struggling with Back Taxes

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation on Monday that would help struggling Michigan homeowners pay their property taxes.

The “Pay As You Stay” bill, sponsored by Rep. Wendell Byrd (D-3-Detroit), eliminates penalties, interest, and fees to allow foreclosing governmental units to significantly reduce delinquent taxes.

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Michigan Budget Talks Stall Again Between Whitmer and GOP Leaders as They Remain Apart on Key Issues

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Republican congressional leaders did not take any action after Thursday’s meeting to address issues around the almost $1 billion left out of Michigan’s final budget.

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