Dems urge Burger King to reconsider

Senate Democrats warned Burger King on Thursday that the fast food chain could be hurting its bottom line by shifting its legal address to Canada.


Majority Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinA national interest rate cap would harm consumers in the name of consumers Senate committee approves 0 million for state election security efforts GOP's Kennedy sends warning shot to Trump nominee Menashi MORE (Ill.), joined by four other liberal senators, urged the burger giant to reconsider its decision to merge with the Canadian doughnut chain Tim Hortons.

“Many of your loyal customers may choose to spend their hard-earned money at one of your many competitors, instead of supporting a company that wants all the benefits of America but refuses to pay its fair share to support our nation,” the senators wrote to Burger King chief executive Daniel Schwartz.

Sens. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownBipartisan housing finance reform on the road less taken Hillicon Valley: Google to promote original reporting | Senators demand answers from Amazon on worker treatment | Lawmakers weigh response to ransomware attacks Senate Democrats want answers on 'dangerous' Amazon delivery system MORE (D-Ohio), Carl LevinCarl Milton LevinStrange bedfellows oppose the filibuster Listen, learn and lead: Congressional newcomers should leave the extremist tactics at home House Democrats poised to set a dangerous precedent with president’s tax returns MORE (D-Mich.), Jack ReedJohn (Jack) Francis ReedNegotiators kick off defense bill talks amid border wall, Iran debates Hillicon Valley: Zuckerberg to meet with lawmakers | Big tech defends efforts against online extremism | Trump attends secretive Silicon Valley fundraiser | Omar urges Twitter to take action against Trump tweet Senate Democrats introduce legislation to limit foreign interference in elections MORE (D-R.I.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersOvernight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Pelosi unveils signature plan to lower drug prices | Trump says it's 'great to see' plan | Progressives pushing for changes Krystal Ball calls on Sanders to follow Yang's lead on war on drugs Buttigieg calls Warren 'evasive' on Medicare for all MORE (I-Vt.) joined Durbin’s letter.

Democrats have been pushing legislation to basically make it impossible for a U.S. company to merge with a smaller foreign company without being counted as American for tax purposes.

But that proposal would appear to have little effect on Burger King’s merger, because Tim Hortons does so much business in Canada, where the parent company is scheduled to be located.

Sen. Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer, Pelosi push Trump to back universal background check bill Sinema says she would back Kennedy in race against Markey Democrats threaten to withhold defense votes over wall MORE (D-N.Y.), joined by Durbin, also released a measure this week that seeks to limit earnings stripping, in which U.S. subsidiaries get a tax break off of loans from foreign parent companies. That bill could limit the economic benefits of the merger for Burger King.

But neither bill is expected to go anywhere in Congress anytime soon. In the meantime, the Obama administration could take unilateral steps in the “very near future,” Treasury Secretary Jack LewJacob (Jack) Joseph LewHogan urges Mnuchin to reconsider delay of Harriet Tubman bill Mnuchin says new Harriet Tubman bill delayed until 2028 Overnight Finance: US reaches deal with ZTE | Lawmakers look to block it | Trump blasts Macron, Trudeau ahead of G-7 | Mexico files WTO complaint MORE said this week.

In their letter, the five senators said, even as Burger King’s parent company would be set up in Canada, the company would still be heavily reliant on American infrastructure. Burger King executives have repeatedly said taxes weren’t a driving force in their decision to merge with Tim Hortons.

“Perversely it will be your franchisees — small business owners who remain loyal U.S. taxpayers — that will suffer from your actions, while reaping none of the benefit from your decision,” the senators wrote.