AFL-CIO boss blasts Obama tax plans

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka blasted President Obama's corporate tax plan on Wednesday. 

Trumka said it was wrong to offer a tax plan that wouldn't amount to a hike on corporations and argued that any tax reform should generate revenue for the government. 


“At a time when the 1 percent have demanded so much sacrifice from working people in the name of deficit reduction, we must ask something of big corporations. That means 'revenue positive' corporate tax reform that raises significant amounts of new tax revenue,” Trumka said in a statement. 

While he did not mention Obama's tax plan or the president by name, he said the union confederation was “concerned that several recent proposals for corporate tax reform do not raise nearly enough revenue because they squander huge sums of money on lowering tax rates for profitable Wall Street corporations.”

Trumka's criticism extends to proposals from congressional Republicans to enact revenue-neutral corporate tax reform.

Obama last week offered a new “grand bargain" that promised to reduce the corporate tax rate from 35 to 28 percent in exchange for new spending on education and infrastructure building. 

The Obama offer was immediately rejected by Republicans. 

Trumka said the government should start taxing profits earned overseas by U.S. companies, not provide a tax repatriation holiday that would allow companies to return money made overseas to the U.S. for a fee. 

“We must start by ending all tax incentives for outsourcing jobs overseas, which would raise more than $583 billion in tax revenue over 10 years,” he said. 

“The suggestion that tax reform should let Wall Street and big corporations get away with paying no more than they pay now is offensive."

Trumka said the AFL-CIO would oppose any attempts this fall to cut major entitlement programs. House GOP leaders have proposed substituting entitlement cuts for the sequester, which hits agency operating budgets once again in fiscal 2014, which starts Oct. 1. 

“The suggestion that such ‘revenue neutral’ corporate tax reform should be coupled with cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, or Social Security benefits is an obscenity,” Trumka said.