Don't let Democrats raise your taxes

April 25, 2021

Florida Times-Union

Op-Ed: Sen. Rick Scott

April 25, 2021

Joe Biden sold the American people a lie. It’s a lie he told over and over during his campaign. During a May 2020 interview with CNBC, then-candidate Joe Biden said, “Nobody making under $400,000 bucks would have their taxes raised. Period. Bingo.” Biden has repeated this claim countless times on debate stages and in interviews. He promised middle-class Americans he wouldn’t raise their taxes.

It was all a lie. Welcome to your very own “if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor,” moment, Mr. President.

It didn’t take long for Biden’s tax lie to begin to unravel. Last month, I stood on the Senate floor and proposed an amendment striking down a tax increase that Democrats quietly tucked into Biden’s massive and wasteful “COVID” spending package. That’s right – the same package that dedicated less than 10% of its funding to fighting COVID-19 and less than 1% to vaccines also contained a tax hike on gig workers and the self-employed. Of course, the Democrats blocked my amendment. They blocked a fix to this bad bill to strip a tax increase on people working gig jobs, like Uber, Lyft and DoorDash. A fix that Democrats previously heralded as a “big win” for the self-employed when it was stripped from Obamacare in 2011. Adding insult to injury, Democrats included a provision in their “COVID” bill banning states from cutting their own taxes if they take any funds from the package. It’s clear the Democrats’ tax hike tactics know no shame. The Democrat Party that once claimed to stand for working Americans is dead.

Now, as our nation battles to get back on its feet after a devastating year, the Democrats have announced a new attack on American prosperity. With our federal debt hurdling toward $30 trillion and a growing risk of runaway inflation, which increases the prices of everyday goods like groceries and hurts low and fixed-income families the most, get ready: here come the big tax increases.

As part of Biden’s recently announced $2 trillion “infrastructure” package, the president is proposing $2 trillion in new taxes to pay for it. Now there are reports that Biden is also back to considering increasing the gas tax even after Secretary Buttigieg claimed it was “of the table” not once, but twice. It’s almost hard to comprehend just how out of touch with reality the Democrats must be to even consider these kind of policies.

Of course, the Democrats will claim that their new taxes won’t hurt American families. They’ll say that increasing the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28% and hiking the highest income tax rate from 37% to 39.6% won’t impact American workers. We know that’s not true. They’ll also say that these tax hikes are a necessity. “We have to raise taxes to pay for our bold liberal agenda,” they’ll claim. Democrats have always chosen this same lazy approach. Instead of making tough choices to cut spending and create efficiencies, they raise taxes. It never works.

When I was growing up, my family struggled a lot. We lived in public housing. I watched my dad’s car get repossessed twice and my parents fight every week to make ends meet. That’s why I’ve worked my entire life to create jobs. I started by buying a donut shop so my mom would have a job and went on to build the largest hospital company in the world, employing hundreds of thousands of Americans. As someone who has actually signed a paycheck, let me be very clear, tax hikes on businesses hurt workers. There is no imaginary line between the two.

Here are the facts. Tax increases don’t create jobs. Tax increases don’t provide sustainable government revenue. Tax increases don’t solve problems. I know this because we didn’t need a single tax increase to turn Florida’s economy around following the Great Recession. In fact, as Governor of Florida, I signed nearly 100 tax cuts into law and cut nearly 5,400 burdensome regulations to help spur economic growth. The result? Over the course of my eight-year administration, Florida’s economy boomed and businesses created more than 1.7 million new private sector jobs – each helping a hardworking family live their dreams in my state.

The policies we’ve seen from Democrats over the past three months remind me of a famous quip from the great American poet Maya Angelou, “When people show you who they are, believe them.”

The Democrats’ tax and spend agenda is real. Believe it.

The Democrats lied when they said they wouldn’t raise your taxes. Believe it.

The Democrat Party that once claimed to stand for working Americans is dead. Believe it.

Republican Rick Scott represents Florida in the United States Senate. He is the former governor of Florida. 


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