Update: the bill passed in the House on November 16th. The bill is now moving in the Senate -- we must stop it there.
As the Republicans in Congress rush to pass tax cuts for the millionaire political funder class, they are using attacks on the environment to pay for it.
If their plan works, we pay for their greed:
The bills being debated in Congress would:
- Give huge tax breaks to wealthy corporations and starve programs that protect our health and environment and provide a safety net for those who struggle to make ends meet.
- Efforts to use tax reform as a way to repeal part of the health insurance law could leave 13 million people uninsured and increase premiums for millions more.
- The House version of tax reform also takes aim at some of the few remaining checks on political campaign spending, by repealing a rule that restricts political campaigning by tax-exempt organizations.
To justify enormous cuts for corporations, the fossil fuel industry’s friends in Congress included in their budget proposal a directive to the Energy and Natural Resources Committee to find an additional $1 billion in revenue. The chair of that committee is Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska who now has an opportunity to give an even bigger prize to her friends in the fossil fuel lobby: opening up the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge to drilling. Murkowski’s committee is pushing a vote to open ANWR this week.
More attacks on the environment:
But that’s not the only attack on the environment included in the cut bill. The proposal also would eliminate the federal tax incentive for purchasing electric vehicles. We know that in order to avoid the worst effect of the climate chaos burning fossil fuels has unleashed, we must keep fossil fuels in the ground. That means that in addition to transitioning to 100% clean energy by 2035, expanding energy efficiency programs, and making public transportation more accessible to everyone, we also need to transition to 100% zero emissions vehicles. The federal tax credit provides a major economic incentive for people to buy electric vehicles and cutting the tax credit would be a major victory for the oil and gas industry.
But that’s not all. The proposal moving in the House would also slash the federal tax credits that support the wind and solar industries. This has been a long-time goal of the Koch Brothers and ALEC.
Tell Congress not to pass tax reform bills that pay for corporate tax cuts by gutting environmental protections and safety net programs!