WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Jack Reed today issued the following statement on the Republicans’ tax legislation:

“If Republicans were willing to prioritize tax cuts for the middle-class and Main Street businesses, we could have passed bipartisan tax reform to simplify the tax code and strengthen our economy.

“Instead, Republican leaders rushed this slap-dashed, partisan, trickle-down tax scheme through with a reckless disregard for facts and independent analysis.

“I oppose the Trump tax bill because it is unfair and irresponsible.  It is an historic transfer of wealth from students, seniors, and working families to multi-national corporations and wealthy estates.  It weakens America’s financial stability and undermines the integrity of our tax system, baking corporate tax avoidance into the system.  Republicans added so many new loopholes that some wealthy individuals with armies of tax lawyers may escape taxation altogether.  They also got rid of targeted tax deductions that middle-class Rhode Island families have relied upon.

“The Trump tax will adversely affect Rhode Islanders in so many ways.  The temporary benefits some families may see won’t cover the long-term damage from this bill or offset the increased costs for things like child care, education, health care, and housing.

“Republicans currently control the House, Senate, and White House and are using their leverage to run up the federal debt and cut holes in the social safety net.  They will soon demand cuts to Social Security and Medicare to reduce the deficit they just created.  Rhode Islanders pay into Social Security and Medicare with every paycheck they earn, and I will strongly oppose any effort to take away or lessen their retirement security.

“Instead of simplifying the tax code, the Trump tax bill opens more loopholes than it closes.  Instead of prioritizing tax relief for the middle-class and small businesses, it lines the pockets of the powerful at the expense of working families.  There is not a single, respected economist or tax scholar on the left or right who contends that this bill simplifies the tax code and pays for itself.  Not one.

“President Trump and Congressional Republicans sold the American people a bad bill of goods.  Now President Trump is trying to claim his short-term political victory is a win for everyday Americans, but they will see all the benefits going to his family and very few going to theirs.

“I will continue working to prevent and undo the damage from this bill and enact real, responsible tax reform that boosts take home pay, spurs job growth, closes loopholes, expands opportunity, and strengthens the long-term financial stability and security of our nation.”