Democrats seize on report of FedEx's $0 tax bill to slam Trump's tax plan

Democrats are seizing on a report published by The New York Times on Sunday that found FedEx didn’t owe anything in taxes in fiscal 2018, a year after President TrumpDonald John TrumpMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Trump camp considering White House South Lawn for convention speech: reports Longtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary MORE signed off on a $1.5 trillion tax cut that sharply reduced tax rates for corporations in the country.

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According to the Times, the package signed by Trump in December 2017, for which FedEx reportedly lobbied hard, spelled good news the following year for the shipping company, which would later see a 34 percent drop in its effective tax rate in fiscal 2018. Its tax rate was reportedly brought to less than zero at the time.

The Times also found that the company, which had a tax bill of more than $1.6 billion in fiscal 2017, has reportedly saved at least $1.6 billion thanks to the tax cut package.

The news was met with backlash from multiple Democrats in Congress, including Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersLongtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary Hillicon Valley: NSA warns of new security threats | Teen accused of Twitter hack pleads not guilty | Experts warn of mail-in voting misinformation Schiff, Khanna call for free masks for all Americans in coronavirus aid package MORE (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenTrump says government to review 5M Kodak loan deal Michelle Obama supporters urge Biden to pick former first lady as running mate On The Money: Unemployment debate sparks GOP divisions | Pandemic reveals flaws of unemployment insurance programs | Survey finds nearly one-third of rehired workers laid off again MORE (D-Mass.), both 2020 Democratic presidential contenders, as well as Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleyHillicon Valley: NSA warns of new security threats | Teen accused of Twitter hack pleads not guilty | Experts warn of mail-in voting misinformation Merkley, Sanders introduce bill limiting corporate facial recognition Portland protesters clash with law enforcement for first time since federal presence diminished MORE (D-Ore.).

The findings by the Times also prompted viral criticism and reactions from a number of social media users.  

Prior to the passage of the 2017 tax cut bill, FedEx CEO and founder Frederick Smith said, “If you make the United States a better place to invest, there is no question in my mind that we would see a renaissance of capital investment.”

But amid gains following the bill’s passage, FedEx’s capital investments have seen a drop in fiscal 2018 and 2019, according to the Times.

The company pushed back on the report from the Times, however, with a spokesperson telling the paper that FedEx "invested billions in capital items eligible for accelerated depreciation and made large contributions to our employee pension plans."

"These factors have temporarily lowered our federal income tax, which was the law’s intention to help grow [gross domestic product], create jobs and increase wages," the representative added.

FedEx is reportedly one of almost three dozen top U.S. corporations that saw their tax rates fall to less than or equal to zero after the 2017 tax law was passed.