Progressive groups launch 'Email Orrin' campaign on tax reform

Progressive groups launch 'Email Orrin' campaign on tax reform

Two progressive groups on Thursday launched a campaign urging members of the public to email Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchThe Hill's Morning Report — What a shutdown would mean for the government GOP Sen. Lamar Alexander won't seek reelection Hatch walks back remarks that he didn't 'care' if Trump broke the law MORE (R-Utah) their concerns about potential tax cuts for the wealthy.

Earlier this month, Hatch released an open letter soliciting comments about tax reform from industry groups and other stakeholders. With their "Email Orrin" campaign, Tax March and Stand Up America are calling on individuals to take Hatch up on his request.

Tax March set up a page on its website where people can email Hatch and send tweets to lawmakers. The group has also placed ads on social media drawing attention to the effort.

"Senator Hatch asked for input from 'stakeholders.' Every taxpaying American is a stakeholder, and far too often they are silent ones when it comes to tax policy,” Tax March Executive Director Nicole Gill said in a news release. “There is no appetite in this country for another government-backed giveaway to millionaires and billionaires at the expense of middle class families."

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Tax reform is a top agenda item for congressional Republicans, and Hatch leads the Senate’s tax-writing panel. Commenters can send him confidential tax-reform suggestions by emailing taxreform2017@finance.senate.gov by July 17.

Some Democrats have been criticizing Republican tax efforts as likely to disproportionately benefit the wealthy. The tax plans that the White House and House Republicans released would both lower the top individual tax rate and repeal the estate tax and alternative minimum tax.

"The phrase 'tax reform' should not be code words for massive taxpayer funded giveaways to the very wealthiest paid for by gutting health care benefits, public schools and our nation's roads and bridges," said Jessica Adair, director of partnerships for Stand Up America. "This is an urgent opportunity for Americans to speak directly to Congress and demand that any tax reform bolster middle and working class families — not pad the pockets of millionaires, billionaires and corporations."

The groups sponsoring the “Email Orrin” campaign were both created as a reaction to President Trump’s campaign and election. Tax March, which has more than 70 partner organizations, started as a group that organized rallies on April 15 where people called on Trump to release his tax returns. Stand Up America was formulated following the election in order to fight back against Trump’s agenda.