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Tim Carney: Tax hikes on the rich to pay for corporate welfare


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2518058#.UO9ttxx7FwcWashington Examiner:

During the "fiscal cliff" debate, the White House justified raising taxes on the rich to ensure people "pay their fair share."

But the beneficiaries were hardly the poor and dispossessed.

Instead, President Obama raised taxes on the rich to fund corporate welfare, with General Electric likely the biggest winner.

Obama's income tax hikes will raise $22.5 billion this year (compared with extending all the Bush tax cuts), while the special-interest business and energy tax credits he demanded will reduce revenue by $65.3 billion, according to data from the Joint Committee on Taxation.

Republican sources told me and other reporters that the White House "absolutely insisted" on loading up the fiscal cliff deal with a package of targeted tax break extensions that had passed the Senate Finance Committee in August. The White House did not respond to a string of phone calls and emails seeking confirmation, denial or clarification.

When White House press secretary Jay Carney returned from vacation Monday, he mostly dodged a question on the tax credits:

"Well, you're assuming that what you've been told is correct," Carney said, not refuting the claim that the White House insisted on the tax breaks. He noted that Republicans supported these tax breaks, too -- only five of 12 Republicans on the Finance Committee voted against the package in August.

Carney's full answer focussed primarily on green energy tax breaks, such as a tax credit for wind turbine manufacturers: "If this key support had been allowed to expire ... as many as 37,000 clean-energy jobs could have been lost."Scissors-32x32.png

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