Friday, July 15, 2011

Which party gave us the corporate jet tax loophole? Guess again.

Paul Ryan (R-WI) was on Fox News' Greta Van Susteren show last night to talk about  - what else - the debt ceiling circus.  I've been rather surprised that Ryan, the House Budget Committee Chairman has been mostly absent from the talks and debate.  He's been squirreled away in a dark room holding Medicare hearings.  Certainly, important work, but I'd love to see him out front on this issue because as a numbers guru, he's able to explain and articulate the rationale for the GOP's strong stand on cutting spending and not raising taxes. I'd much rather have him give the GOP response to Obama's  pep rally press conference pep rally tomorrow than Boehner. 

Finally, someone let Ryan out of the dingy House hearing room tonight and even though he coughed and cleared his throughout the interview with Greta, he brought up an important point that someone needs to scream from the rooftops.  Namely, that the so-called "corporate jet loophole" was a part of the Obama stimulus package. No kidding - it was the DEMOCRATS WHO GAVE US THE CORPORATE JET TAX LOOPHOLE!

Ryan told Greta:
'It was in the stimulus package. None of us voted for the stimulus package.  This was called accelerated depreciation. It's a tax policy that the president put into his stimulus package and passed. Now he's saying that it's a corporate jet loophole. It  applies to lots of things, airplanes included. What I find interesting about this one particular issue was it never came up in our debt negotiations, it never came up in discussions. The first time I heard about a corporate jet loophole, which was in the stimulus package, was when he mentioned it six times in a press conference. "
In February, 2009, Fox News reported:
"Just a few months after lawmakers scolded auto executives for flying to Washington in private jets, Congress approved a tax break in the stimulus package to help businesses buy their own planes. The incentive -- first used to help plane makers recover from the 2001 terror attacks -- sharply reduces the up front tax bill for companies who buy assets like business planes.

The aviation industry, which is cutting jobs as it suffers from declining shipments and canceled orders, hopes the tax break in the economic-stimulus bill just signed by President Barack Obama will persuade more companies to buy planes and snap a slump in general aviation that began last year.
"This is exactly the type of financial incentive that should be included in a stimulus bill," said Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Kan., in an interview. His state lost at least 6,900 jobs at Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft, both based in Wichita."
Of course, rather than taking responsibility for the loopholes, Obama looked into the teleprompter and read, "It's the Republicans' fault, it's the Republicans' fault, it's the Republicans' fault."  Six times Obama repeated the fib about Republicans wanting to protect that tax loophole for millionaires. Apparently, TOTUS is stuck on that line. 

Paul Ryan expressed his frustration with the stalemate:
"Look, I understand it plays for good politics and class warfare and makes it look like all we care about is that corporate - who cares about that corporate jet loophole? It's - we want to get rid of all those loopholes in tax reform. And what people don't tell you is our Republican budget? That's exactly what we proposed doing! We're saying clear out the brush of loopholes and lower everyone's tax rates so we can create jobs in the economy.  That way the government doesn't lose any money but we clean up the tax code and we're not picking winners and losers in the tax code.  General Electric paid no taxes but made a lot of money.  UPS, another big company, paid about a 34% tax rate and their competitor, DHL, paid 24%. So there's something wrong with the fact that we're taxing a lot of our employers more. "
Everyone clear on that now?  Obama?  Obama? ....?  

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