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GOP senator: Raising corporate taxes is a 'non-starter'

GOP senator: Raising corporate taxes is a 'non-starter'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoEPA water nominee commits to 'enduring solutions' in confirmation hearing Biden meets for first time with 'Big Four' congressional leaders The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Cheney poised to be ousted; Biden to host big meeting MORE (R-W.Va.) said Thursday that she wouldn’t support legislation raising corporate taxes, calling the idea a “non-starter” during a press conference. 

“I voted for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. It had the desired effect of bringing capital back into this country, no corporate inversions, higher wages, lower unemployment,” said Capito, referring to a 2017 bill that cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, when asked if Republicans would be open to any changes. 

“I think that’s a non-negotiable red line,” she said. “For me personally, that’s a non-starter.”

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Other Republicans at the press conference expressed agreement.

Capito's remark sparked Democratic criticism on Thursday, with Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenSenate Finance Committee to consider clean energy legislation this month Hillicon Valley: Global cybersecurity leaders say they feel unprepared for attack | Senate Commerce Committee advances Biden's FTC nominee Lina Khan | Senate panel approves bill that would invest billions in tech House moderates signal concerns with Pelosi drug pricing bill MORE (D-Ore.) saying the "red line" was "completely unreasonable."

"Republicans’ insistence that the most profitable companies in the world shouldn’t contribute a single penny to investments in roads, schools and our clean-energy future is simply not acceptable,” said Wyden, who chairs the Senate Finance Committee, in a statement.

The comments from both lawmakers come as the White House aims to raise the corporate tax rate to 28 percent to pay for a proposed $2.3 trillion infrastructure package.

How to pay for the package has been just one of the areas of debate between political parties, as Republicans have also criticized the proposal's size and scope.

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At Thursday's press conference, Capito, who is the top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, said that she believes the infrastructure bill should be limited to “core” infrastructure.

“I said roads and bridges, I also mean ... wastewater projects, our airport modernizations, broadband is a huge part of that,” she said. 

President BidenJoe BidenBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' Biden: McCarthy's support of Cheney ouster is 'above my pay grade' Conservative group sues over prioritization of women, minorities for restaurant aid MORE held a meeting with bipartisan lawmakers on the issue this week, though that meeting also took some criticism at the press conference. 

"The next time you have a meeting in the Oval Office, let's make sure it's not just a photo op, but a true push for a bipartisan solution to infrastructure," said Sen. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstGraham warns about trying to 'drive' Trump from GOP: 'Half the people will leave' The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Senate braces for daylong brawl on elections bill Top female GOP senator compares Cheney ousting to 'cancel culture' MORE (R-Iowa) in comments directed at the president.

Updated at 6:33 p.m.