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U.S. National Debt:

Weekly Column: Biden Budget Unaffordable

Guest column submitted by U.S. Senator Mike Crapo

The White House recently released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 budget proposal a month late, and it would run our country deeper in debt.  It would drive up federal spending to $6.9 trillion, while deficits would rise to more than $2 trillion by FY 2033.  Interest on federal debt will skyrocket from $661 billion this year to more than $10 trillion over the next ten years.  To make matters worse, the President’s budget calls for nearly $5 trillion in new and increased taxes to help fuel tax-and-spend proposals.  We simply cannot afford this. 

Despite recently passing nearly $500 billion in additional taxes on America’s job creators, the White House wants to rehash tax hike proposals to help enable this excessive spending.  If the nearly $5 trillion in new and increased taxes called for in the President’s budget are realized, these plans would create a tax regime that would lead to some individuals handing over more than half of their paychecks to the government, and many American businesses doing better off being headquartered overseas.

  • Main street job creators would be hit with $1.8 trillion in new taxes.
  • When combined with surtaxes, the President’s budget calls for hiking the individual federal income tax rate up to its highest level since 1986, and the tax increases would hit even more hardworking Americans.
  • An expanded death tax would force family farms, ranches and other generational businesses to sell off assets to pay an enormous tax bill to Washington.
  • The proposed increases in the global minimum tax rate and domestic corporate tax rate would give our biggest foreign competitors—like China—the upper hand to undercut America’s ability to fairly compete.
  • American energy producers and consumers would face $37 billion in increased taxes, which will cut jobs, raise prices at the pump and increase our reliance on foreign oil.

To help collect all these taxes, the budget also requests an astounding $43.2 billion more for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), in addition to the $80 billion the IRS already received from the Inflation Reduction Act.  Concerns with a supersized IRS wasting untold taxpayer dollars auditing hardworking Americans and small businesses have driven my ongoing efforts to protect--in federal law--taxpayers making less than $400,000 from increased audits.  Clearly this effort cannot be abandoned, as calls for continued, excessive deficit spending to back increased IRS enforcement continue. 

Instead of this failed tax-and-spend strategy, we need pro-growth policies that drive a healthy economy.  Building on the success of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA)—which led to one of the strongest economies in generations—is an important part of the solution.  TCJA introduced competitive tax rates while broadening the base and putting an end to American companies relocating to countries with lower tax rates.  It also led to record-high corporate tax receipts, low unemployment, and higher wages.  The President’s budget would do the opposite. 

Americans have now experienced well over a year and a half of inflation above 5 percent.  Costs of rent, groceries and services continue to rise.  Wages cannot keep up.  Last year, the Administration committed to working in a bipartisan fashion to address this serious problem, noting the budget must complement monetary policy.  Instead, Democrats rushed a reckless tax-and-spend agenda through Congress rolling out $500 billion of subsidies and hundreds of billions in new tax increases on U.S. job creators.  Now, the President sends Congress a budget that clearly shows he intends to do more of the same.  The spending binge must stop.  We must address our growing deficits in order to put the United States’ finances on a sustainable path.

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