WASHINGTON, DC (October 16, 2017) – Today, National Urban League President and CEO, Marc H. Morial, released a letter to the full U.S. Senate, urging them to oppose the Senate’s FY 2018 Budget Resolution, better known as a tax cut gravy train for wealthy Americans. The complete letter follows and is attached.
On behalf of the National Urban League, I write to express our strong opposition to the Senate FY2018 Budget Resolution and urge you to vote against it when it comes to the Senate Floor. This Budget Resolution serves only as a Trojan Horse to fast-track President Trump’s $1.5 trillion tax cut proposal, which primarily favors wealthy Americans, and would ultimately damage our economy by increasing the deficit and by starving key human investment programs for those Americans who are financially struggling and most in need.
According to estimates from The Tax Policy Center, a think tank of nationally recognized experts in tax, budget and social policy, the top one percent of households would get close to 80% of the proposed tax cuts, adding up to an annual, after-tax boost of close to $200,000. The top 0.1 percent of households would receive 40% of the tax cuts, giving our nation’s wealthiest Americans an annual $1 million boost in after-tax income. Middle class and lower earning families in the bottom 80% would get almost 13% of the tax cuts and see less than half a percent increase in after-tax income. Additionally, the Tax Policy Center predicts that nearly 30% of those in the middle class could actually see their taxes increase.
These tax cuts are not free and will come at the cost of deep spending cuts to vital services such as health care, nutrition programs for low-income and poor Americans, people with disabilities, hardworking families, seniors and our children.
Tax cuts do not add up to tax reform. Our nation does not benefit from tax cuts that widen income inequality and unfairly burden families struggling to get by. We need tax reform with a focus on fairness. Prudently designed tax policy should raise revenue to bring desperately needed relief to poor, working and middle class Americans, and it should reduce our stubbornly wide income inequality gap.
For more than 100 years, the National Urban League has worked with all levels of government to put communities first when considering short and long term spending decisions, and to resist attempts to cut and/or eliminate important programs that expand economic opportunities and address health and education disparities in the hardest-hit communities. Our 88 affiliates representing 300 communities in 36 states and the District of Columbia, offer direct services that help more than 2 million people enter the economic and social mainstream.
When it comes to tax policy, we have longed believed in—and advocated for—tax reform that prioritizes economic mobility for low-income families and strengthens the middle class. A constructive approach to tax reform would increase the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Low-Income Housing and New Markets tax credit programs while reining in tax and special interest loopholes and expenditures that solely benefit wealthy individuals and corporations. The tax code is a serious and important tool that can incentivize and stimulate job creation and economic development. Any tax plan must produce equitable and efficient outcomes. Anything else – and anything less – is simply unacceptable. Vote NO on the Senate FY18 Budget Resolution.
Marc H. Morial
President and Chief Executive Officer
National Urban League