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Gianforte leaves out a few details

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A guest column in the Missoulian, written by Republican U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte, touts the tax (reform?) bill passed by Congress and signed into law by Trump. Gianforte left out a few facts.

Like the deficit. For over a decade, Republicans have blasted Democrats for not dealing with the growing U.S. deficit. Republicans particularly skewered Obama for adding to it, which he did mostly by implementing economic stimulus packages to get us out of the Great Recession. It should be noted, though, that of the five recent presidents, Bush Sr. is in second place for deficit spending, followed by Reagan and then Bush Jr. Clinton actually reduced the deficit by one percent.

Over ten years, the Republican tax plan adds an estimated $1.5 trillion to the national deficit.

By the way, in eight years, the tax breaks end for individuals. They’re permanent for corporations. So, after 2025, your taxes will most likely go up, especially if you’re in the lower and middle-income brackets. Gianforte forgot to mention that, too. If the tax breaks aren’t renewed in 2026, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:

By 2027, when many of its provisions would have expired, those at the top would still get large tax cuts, but every income group below $75,000 would face tax increases, on average.

“Those at the top… ” are the key words in the Republican tax plan. Let’s check out the estimated tax savings for some of Trump’s cabinet members and family:

Rex Tillerson – $4.5 million, Betsy Devos – $7.2 million, Steve Mnuchin – $4.5 million, Jared Kushner – $12 million…

Gianforte’s buddy, Republican Sen. Steve Daines, looks to make out quite well, what with the pass-through tax changes he extorted out of the Senate and estate tax savings he voted for. According to a Billings Gazette story, Democratic Sen. Jon Tester will also see a decrease in his taxes, although not as substantial as Daines’. Republican Rep. Greg Gianforte may have to pay more in taxes but not if he takes advantage of new loopholes and pass-throughs. From the NYT:

Already, lawyers and accountants are eyeing several provisions that investors and companies could potentially exploit.

Daines and Gianforte voted for the bill, Tester did not.

Let’s cut to the chase — energy drillers, sports teams and major corporations benefit from this tax bill — those of middle income will get far smaller cuts. It repeals the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, increasing health care premiums. It seriously damages climate change, energy and environmental policy.

Another detail Gianforte forget to mention: it supercharges inequality. Make no mistake, services will be cut, especially to the most vulnerable. State’s will try to mitigate the damage caused by budget shortfalls but it will be the lower and middle-class households that will bear the brunt. Gianforte will undoubtedly come out of it just fine.

 

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About the author

Pete Talbot

'Papa’ Pete Talbot is first and foremost a grandfather to five wonderful grandchildren. Like many Montanans, he has held numerous jobs over the years: film and video producer, a partner in a marketing and advertising firm, a builder and a property manager. He’s served on local and statewide Democratic Party boards. Pete has also been blogging at various sites for over a decade. Ping-pong and skiing are his favorite diversions. He enjoys bourbon.

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