Wall: $5.7 billion. New military budget: $716 billion. New tax scam for the wealthy passed last year: $1 trillion (at least). While Trump’s GOP and media enablers will forget all about fiscal responsibility when it comes to the Idiot Wall and increasing military spending, and the base doesn’t care about America running deficits as long as they feel Trump is winning, one thing all but the most delusional of Trump’s mob won’t abide is a tax hike on them to fund a tax cut for the uber-rich.
Well, tax filing season is upon us, and now that the longest (and most avoidable) shutdown in U.S. history is in the rearview, the IRS is back to full strength. People are preparing their returns. And many of them really don’t like what they’re seeing.
Vox dug into the issue and found that, while many taxpayers have been surprised and outraged at unexpected tax bills following the top-earner tax cut, it’s actually a withholding issue: less withheld during the year = more owed at the end. This crucial information was hidden in a GAO report that oozed out last summer. Trump and the GOP were so callous in their rush to pass their big tax scheme, and are so out of touch with working people anyway, they didn’t bother to explain to the country the real impacts of what increasingly looks to be a needless, deficit exploding giveaway to billionaires.
It gets worse. While taxpayers dodged a bullet this year, at least with respect to total taxes paid, many did see their taxes go up. Many tax brackets are scheduled to pay higher taxes each year for the next seven years, when the scheme’s tax cuts to the non super-rich go away. The rub? The tax cuts for the top earners and corporations are permanent.
Trump is every bit the liar, charlatan, crook, and racist that we can all see right before our eyes. But he has an iron grip on enough of the country that he’s still dangerous as long as he’s in power, especially as the many strands of the Mueller investigation wind around him and his family. His supporters will put up with anything he says. They won’t put up with higher taxes while the big guys get another break.
The fact that Trump and the GOP flubbed their tax scheme rollout in the first year – when voters were supposed to be pleasantly surprised by a tax cut prior to the runup to 2020 – means that they’ll have a lot of trouble spinning to their base the joys of paying more to Uncle Sam so he can subsidize yachts. All that does is give strength to marginal tax rate advocates like AOC and others whose job of convincing voters that they’re being taken for a ride just got easier.
Chuck is a former community reporter, columnist, and Army veteran