This is a strange thing for a conservative to wish someone. Typically, it would fall under the same general heading as “enjoy the hurricane,” or “have a great night at the shelter.” This year, however, Tax Day is the first time that tens of millions of Americans get to see on paper the impact of the Trump tax cuts. For most, it is a happy day indeed.
The “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” (TCJA) was passed into law in December of 2017 and went into effect at the beginning of 2018. It passed on a very strict party-line vote basis, with Democrats universally objecting to the idea of placing more money in hands of citizens to spend. Giving taxpayers back their own money is anathema to Democrats because they all know how to spend it better than you do.
Some of the key highlights for individuals that went into effect last year were:
- Five of the seven marginal tax brackets had the tax rate reduced;
- The standard deduction was effectively doubled for each type of filer (married, single, etc.);
- The ObamaCare mandate was repealed;
- The child tax credit was doubled.
It is worth mentioning that Ivanka Trump’s child tax credit increase is a testament to how this presidential "family" doesn’t conform to conventional conservative stereotypes. Combined with husband Jared’s push for prison reform, Ivanka is showing that conservatives do care about real people with real problems.
In addition to the above direct tax benefits for American families, perhaps of even greater benefit was the indirect action of lowering corporate tax rates. Now, Democrats will tell you that lowering taxes on business punishes individuals. Democrats say this because they either have never taken an economics course, or if they did, they didn’t pass.
Sadly, it is cliché but nonetheless true, that businesses do not pay taxes. Only people pay taxes. A business is a legal person but not a real person. When corporate tax rates are lower, there is more money to fund growth, hire workers, and raise wages. That is exactly what has been happening.
Let’s evaluate the impact of the first full year of TCJA:
- According to H&R Block data, the overall tax liability of their filers is down 24.9 percent this year (please note that H&R is NOT doing the taxes for the wealthy);
- The overall unemployment rate in February was 3.8 percent. Unemployment was also down year to year for women, African-Americans, and Hispanics;
- Gross domestic product in the US grew at a rate of 2.9 percent in 2018 compared to 2.2 percent in 2017. The market expectation was 2.4 percent;
- Hourly wages were growing at a rate of 3.4 percent as of February 2019, the largest increase in 10 years (another note – most rich people are not being paid an hourly wage);
- Both personal income and disposable income, increased in 2018 over 2017;
- Corporations repatriated hundreds of billions of dollars in 2018, meaning that real money came back into the United States to create jobs and raise wages.
All of this gives reason to pause on this Tax Day and say thanks to the president, Ivanka, and others who pushed to make this happen. If you’re feeling generous with your newfound liquidity, you can even thank the woeful Republicans of the last session who managed to get up the courage to vote for these tax cuts. They certainly lacked the courage elsewhere.
For Democrats to suggest through inference that there is some way to grow an economy where only those of less income benefit while those of higher income suffer is foolish and disingenuous.
There will not be any Democrats giving thanks. The party of lies still will not admit that the tax cuts benefited anyone except the rich. They demagogue the issue so that voters will feel victimized and turn to some brilliant Democratic mind like Bernie Sanders — whose answer to increasing personal income is to "write a book" — in order to get what they have coming to them.
The numbers are clear. More than any time in recent American history the deserving middle-class and working-class Americans are finally starting to get what they work so hard to earn. They are getting a chance to make more money, keep more money, and spend that money on the things that they want; not things government thinks they need.
The greatest economic myth that is perpetuated by Democrats, the same Democrats who never took or didn’t pass that economics course, is that if the income rises for wealthy people it necessarily means that the less wealthy are being somehow “victimized.” They want you to believe that wealth is produced at the expense, and with the exploitation, of others. This is classic Marxist thinking and it simply isn’t true.
Today, the United States economy is growing and everyone is benefiting. For Democrats to suggest through inference that there is some way to grow an economy where only those of less income benefit while those of higher income suffer is foolish and disingenuous.
It is mostly disingenuous and here is why: Most elected Democrats are in that upper-income level about which they protest. They don’t voluntarily surrender income, take a vow of poverty, open their homes to the homeless, or elect to pay additional taxes. Their rhetoric against the prosperity created by TCJA is designed to collect votes, not to address any real injustice. Right now, a big initiative in the House of Representatives is getting the IRS to release the past tax returns of Donald Trump so that they can be leaked into the media. It seems like a bunch of wealthy Democrats want to take aim at a wealthy Republican to prove his wealth isn’t as “pure” as theirs.
Perhaps those Democrats should try to get ahold of the tax returns of their individual constituents? In the highly unlikely event that they are able to read them, they might just learn the benefits of lowering tax rates across the board for individuals and businesses.
The truth is, they already know. They just choose to lie about it.
So, happy Tax Day! First round’s on the first family!