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Biden adviser declines to put timeline on plans to increase corporate tax rate

Biden adviser declines to put timeline on plans to increase corporate tax rate
© United Press International

An informal adviser to Joe BidenJoe BidenDemocrats warn GOP will regret Barrett confirmation Trump campaign eyes election night party at his sold-out DC hotel Harris blasts GOP for confirming Amy Coney Barrett: 'We won't forget this' MORE’s presidential campaign on Wednesday said he did not want to “litigate” when the Democratic nominee would pursue an increase in the corporate tax rate.

“I’m not going to litigate the timing of that set of policies,” Jared Bernstein, a senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, said at the Milken Institute’s 2020 virtual global conference.

The comments come as Democrats debate what to prioritize if Biden becomes president in January. Senate Democrats have indicated that they are unlikely to move immediately on rolling back President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump admin to announce coronavirus vaccine will be covered under Medicare, Medicaid: report Election officials say they're getting suspicious emails that may be part of malicious attack on voting: report McConnell tees up Trump judicial pick following Supreme Court vote MORE’s tax cuts and will instead focus on spending that’s aimed at creating jobs and a national plan to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

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Biden has proposed increasing the corporate tax rate from 21 percent to 28 percent, and he said in a CNN interview last month that he would make changes to corporate taxes on “day one.” His campaign said shortly after that interview that Biden’s first priority is to control the outbreak and that it’s hard to say what would follow given that the state of the economy in January remains to be seen.

Bernstein said that Biden has a “three-part sequential agenda” of controlling the coronavirus, fiscal relief and then pursuing more permanent policies aimed at building a more resilient economy.  

Washington Post reporter Heather Long, who moderated the session with Bernstein, said that business leaders are nervous about Biden’s plan to raise the corporate tax rate. She asked Bernstein if he thinks it’s reasonable to raise the corporate rate in 2021 even if the economy isn’t at full strength.

While he didn’t want to discuss the timing of corporate tax increases, Bernstein said that controlling the virus and fiscal relief need to happen “extremely quickly.”

Bernstein also said that it’s important to think about where taxes are targeted. He said that recent literature has found that much of corporate taxation falls on excess profits.