GOP: Corporate tax rate no April Fools' joke

Other Republicans have also tweeted about the corporate tax rate. Rep. Kristi Noem (S.D.) emphasized that the tax rate is shameful, and Sen. Orrin Hatch (Utah), the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, said it put the U.S. in an "inauspicious position."
 
“On Sunday, America becomes country w/ highest corporate tax rate. This isn't something we should be proud 2 be 1st in,” Noem said, linking to a Wall Street Journal article.

For his part, Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) took a dig at Democrats, casting them as to blame.

“They view corporations as bottomless wells of potential tax money. It doesn’t work that way in the real world,” Barrasso wrote in a Fox News op-ed.

 

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GOP members are not alone pushing back against the No. 1 ranking. The Business Roundtable, a prominent association representing business, has also run ads in several Capitol Hill publications this week, The Hill reported.

As it happens, both Democrats and Republicans have expressed an interest in reforming the corporate tax code.

The Obama administration released a framework for a corporate tax revamp in February that would lower the top federal rate to 28 percent. And in their most recent budget, House Republicans again proposed dropping the rate to 25 percent.

By and large, Republicans also want to reform the corporate and individual tax systems together, noting that many small businesses pay taxes through the individual code.

But Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and other administration officials have indicated that they would prefer to concentrate on business tax reform, suggesting there was more potential for compromise on that front.

Still, Washington tax observers don’t expect a tax reform package to be hashed out until at least next year, and several obstacles remain for policymakers.

Many GOP lawmakers, for instance, hammered the Obama administration’s framework when it was released in February, with Hatch calling it “murky, ill-defined and contradictory to the goal of reducing complexity and making our tax code more efficient.”

On the other side of the ideological spectrum, some liberal groups have noted that many companies – General Electric, for example – already pay far lower than their statutory tax rate.

And Democrats like Rep. Sandy Levin (D-Mich.) has made the case that, even though Republicans want to lower the rate to 25 percent, there aren’t enough tax breaks in the code to pay for that sort of reduction.


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