By: Lewis Morris
As Democrats take another shot at Bilk Back Better, it could mean higher taxes for millions.
President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats are working feverishly to pass a $1 trillion spending package before the August recess. This casserole of madness, sometimes referred to as Build Back Lighter, is another tired attempt to push through climate and energy legislation and other items that were part of the Build Back Better boondoggle that was beaten back last year by 50 Senate Republicans and a lone Democrat: West Virginia’s Joe Manchin.
When it comes to spending, though, Democrats don’t take “no” for an answer. And if they get 50 “yes” votes this time, we’ll all pay for it.
As with BBB, Democrats plan to “pay for” BBL with a slew of tax increases that will hit small businesses and middle-class taxpayers hardest. You know, the very people Biden said he’d protect from tax hikes. Millions of Americans knew better than to trust him, but that didn’t stop Leftmedia “fact-checkers” from rushing to his defense every time someone warned he’d raise taxes.
Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation analyzed the tax impact of BBL at the request of congressional Republicans. Tax increases tied to the bill include a 15% minimum tax on corporate income over $1 billion, a 5% surtax on income over $10 million, an 8% surtax on income over $25 million, and a 1% surtax on corporate stock buybacks.
Democrats also created a 3.8% “net investment income tax” on pass-through income over $400,000. Pass-through income is money that passes through a business to its owner and is taxed as individual income. Pass-through businesses are generally sole proprietorships, partnerships, and S-corporations and LLCs. These make up approximately 95% of all business entities in the U.S. and include most small business owners.
That’s a lot of new taxes — and they’ll hit taxpayers hard. Next year, those earning between $50,000 and $100,000 would pay $5.2 billion more in taxes. Taxpayers falling in the $75,000-$100,000 bracket and the $100,000-$200,000 bracket would also pay more. Over 10 years, about 30% of the revenue raised will come from those making less than $400,000 per year.
It says a lot about the state of mind of people like Joe Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that they think passing this package will help them in November. Perhaps they missed the historic 9.1% inflation rate now saddling the economy, or the record-high gas and grocery prices that people are struggling to cover.
Thankfully, Senator Manchin has introduced a dose of common sense here. Manchin told Schumer recently that he won’t support any measure that includes climate and energy provisions or higher taxes. And no Manchin, no BBL.
Not surprisingly, Manchin is being vilified by everyone to the left of him. Progressives are blaming him for singlehandedly relegating the world to a warmer future. Vermont socialist Senator Bernie Sanders blew a gasket on the Sunday talk-show circuit, claiming that Manchin is “intentionally sabotaging” Biden’s agenda. Sanders also laughably claimed that his colleague represents the very wealthy, not the people of West Virginia.
Sanders might be dismayed to learn that Manchin is actually quite popular back home, and probably more popular nationally than Sanders. But leave it to a “progressive” to blame his failures on someone else. In any case, Manchin told Schumer that he’ll support a bill that extends federal health insurance subsidies and keeps pharmaceutical prices under control. But that’s as far as he’s willing to go.
In other words, it sounds like BBL is dead on arrival. And that would be great news for your family’s tax bill.