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Public Statements

Disclose Act of 2012--Motion to Proceed

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, last week, in response to another disappointing month of job growth, President Obama issued a truly bizarre ultimatum--a truly bizarre ultimatum: Let me raise taxes on a million businesses or I will raise taxes on everybody. Let me raise taxes on a million businesses or I will raise taxes on everybody.

Yesterday, Democratic leaders in Congress took this strange new economic theory--whereby politicians purport to help job creation by hurting job creators--to dizzying new heights. Yesterday, Senate Democratic leaders said they would actually prefer--prefer--to see America go off the so-called fiscal cliff this coming January--along with the trauma that would unleash on our economy--than let businesses maintain their existing tax rates. That was the position of Democratic leaders yesterday: They would rather see America go off the fiscal cliff in January than let a million businesses maintain their current tax rates.

It is an astonishing admission--an astonishing admission. Democrats in Congress are now saying they would rather see taxes go up on every American at the end of the year than let about a million businesses keep what they earn now. They would rather let taxes go up on everybody in the country rather than allow a million businesses to keep the money they earn now.

This isn't an economic agenda--it is not an economic agenda--it is an ideological crusade. This morning, Ernst & Young is releasing a study which shows that President Obama's plan to raise taxes on these businesses will result in 710,000 fewer jobs. What a great idea: Let's raise taxes on a million of our most successful small businesses and eliminate 700,000 jobs in the middle of the most tepid recovery in anybody's memory. What a terrific idea. For those who manage to keep their jobs, real aftertax wages would fall by an estimated 1.8 percent, meaning living standards would decline as government sucks more capital out of the economy.

The President's proposal, in other words, is a recipe for economic stagnation and decline--a recipe for economic stagnation and decline. But the Murray proposal--the idea we should raise taxes on everybody--is even worse. Not only would it trigger another recession, it would put the global economy at risk. Here is the Democratic theory: that a massive income tax increase on 140 million American taxpayers wouldn't be so bad because the effects wouldn't be felt right away. It wouldn't be so bad because the effects wouldn't be felt right away.

This bizarre conclusion can only be reached by politicians and budget analysts who have never worked a day in the private sector, who don't understand what goes into cutting a paycheck for employees, and who don't have a concept of the planning--the planning--that is necessary to operate a business on thin margins in a tough economy.

This shows how out of touch these people are, to rely on the analysis of Ivy Tower liberals instead of listening to the jobs groups that have been pleading with us to fix this problem sooner rather than later and end the uncertainty that is acting like a big wet blanket over our entire economy.

Today another nonpartisan group, the Business Roundtable, urged Congress to adopt the Republican plan to extend current tax law for a year and make a bridge to tax reform. In a letter to Congress, the group's chairman, Boeing CEO Jim McNerney, warned:

Without effective action soon, this uncertainty will spawn a dangerous crisis, threatening our economy, businesses and workers.

What Republicans have been saying is that we should eliminate this uncertainty right now. We should eliminate the uncertainty that Boeing employees--nearly 85,000 of whom work in Washington State--and so many others are facing right now. We should tackle these problems now rather than waiting until the end of the year.

Let me just boil it down. Faced with the slowest economic recovery in modern times, chronic joblessness, and the lowest percentage of able-bodied Americans actually participating in the workforce in literally decades, Democrats' one-point plan to revive the economy is this: You earn, we take. You earn, we take is apparently the only thing they have.

Surely we can do better. I know we can, and so do the American people.

Mr. President, I yield the floor.


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