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Public Statements

Small Business Tax Cut Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. CANTOR. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself as much time as I may consume.

Mr. Speaker, we know jobs won't come back until small businesses recover. Small businesses have generated over 65 percent of the new jobs in this country; but the economic downturn, red tape, and higher taxes coming from Washington have simply made it harder for small business to create jobs.

Tax policies should encourage economic growth, investment, and job creation, not stifle it. We need to stop and think about what kind of country we want to be. Do we want to be one with lower taxes, more growth, and more jobs; or do we want to be one of more government control and fewer opportunities?

This week, when every American filed their tax returns, the other party in the Senate voted to increase taxes. We should not be taking money out of the hands of those we are counting on to create jobs. We need to let small business owners keep more of their hard-earned money so they can start hiring again.

Today, Mr. Speaker, we'll vote on the Small Business Tax Cut Act to give every small business with fewer than 500 employees a 20 percent tax cut. Our bill puts more money into the hands of small business owners so they can reinvest those funds to retain and create more jobs and grow their businesses, plain and simple.

According to a study, the Small Business Tax Cut Act will help create more than 100,000 new jobs a year once fully in place. One-third of the firms that benefit from our tax cut are owned by women. One-fifth are owned by minorities. And our legislation won't just benefit small business owners; it benefits current workers by boosting wages.

Mr. Speaker, when I talk with small business owners across the country, I hear they need more opportunity to grow. I hear that taxes are siphoning away their income. I hear they can't access capital.

One small business owner in Spotsylvania, Virginia, called the small business tax cut a win-win for him and other small business owners in the economy. He said that with more money to invest in his businesses he could afford to hire more staff, buy new equipment and expand.

Mr. Speaker, while we continue to work toward tax reform that broadens the base, brings down the rates for everybody, and gets rid of loopholes, Washington assumes the role of picking winners and losers. We need to take incremental steps to give job creators tax relief right away. This Small Business Tax Cut Act is a step in that right direction.

President Obama called small businesses the anchors of our Main Streets. We agree. I hope we can all unite around helping the small businesses which are the engines of job creation in our country.

Mr. Speaker, I'd say in response to the gentleman's assertion towards the definition of small business in this bill, this is the Small Business Administration definition of small business. This is what every program that comes out of this government aimed to help small businesses is premised upon. The SBA definition of a small business is one of 499 or fewer.

As far as the gentleman's allegations about the potential for abuse under this bill, if he'd read the language of the bill, Mr. Speaker, it caps the ability to benefit from the tax cut to 50 percent of the W 2 wages that that small business paid out. This is, straight up, something to help small businesses keep more of their money while they're having so much difficulty keeping the lights on and, instead, giving them the ability to grow, to grow, invest, and create more jobs.

As far as the gentleman's allegations that somehow this bill only affects those millionaires, billionaires and the rest, I think he will see the studies have shown that just 18.3 percent of those people are in the categories of income he suggests, with 80-some percent in the middle class--80-some percent, the true small business owners who we're relying on to create jobs for the middle class to come back.

And I would say to the gentleman, as far as the allegation of gimmickry, the essence of supply-side economics, the centrality issue on taxes is the reduction of marginal rates. That's exactly what this bill does.

Does it provide it for long enough? Does it provide permanency? No. But what we want to do in a permanent way is effect broader tax reform. But since we can't see eye to eye on that, since we've still got work to do, let's give the small businesses some help now.

With that, I reserve the balance of my time, Mr. Speaker.

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Mr. CANTOR. I yield myself 30 seconds just in response, Mr. Speaker, to the allegation about those who benefit from the Small Business Tax Cut Act. I would ask the gentleman to perhaps look at the language of the Democrat alternative on the motion to recommit because it, as well, provides the same benefit it's trying to provide to others. All those people, the so-called ``rich and famous'' that he says are the only ones that benefit, also benefit under their alternative.

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Mr. CANTOR. I will not yield.

Mr. Speaker, we are here to provide the kind of relief to the small business men and women that will benefit from this.

With that, I yield 2 minutes to the gentlewoman from Tennessee (Mrs. Black).

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Mr. CANTOR. I yield myself 30 seconds.

I just want to set the record straight, Mr. Speaker.

The Ways and Means Committee had two small business hearings on the implications of tax reform in which this proposal was raised. In addition, the gentleman well knows that there was a markup.

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Mr. CANTOR. If I could finish. No.

There was a markup in committee in which even the gentleman offered an amendment and then withdrew it because it was ruled nongermane. Of course there was a markup. Of course this idea has been the subject of discussion in committee.

Again, I just wanted to set the record straight, Mr. Speaker.

With that, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from Illinois (Mrs. Biggert).

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Mr. CANTOR. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself 30 seconds.

Again, Mr. Speaker, just to correct the record, the gentleman from Texas indicated that this bill doesn't benefit sole proprietors. Sole proprietors are, in fact, the disproportionate beneficiaries under this bill. According to the Committee on Joint Taxation, 17.9, almost 18 million sole proprietors benefit under this bill, again, to set the record straight, Mr. Speaker.

I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Brady), not only the chairman of the Subcommittee on Trade but, as well, the vice chairman of the Joint Economic Committee.

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Mr. CANTOR. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself 30 seconds just to respond to the gentleman. I think he put his finger on the problem here. The problem with his kind of amendment is the problem with the Tax Code today, because it means that if you're a business, under his rule, you would have to come to Washington to seek eligibility for a tax break or seek eligibility for a tax favor. And if you're on the approved list in Washington, then you can go and benefit and have an advantage over others.

That's not what we believe. We believe in helping all small businesses.

With that, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Missouri (Mr. Graves), the Small Business Committee chairman.

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