I don’t pretend to be an expert on taxes, and I realize that the GOP tax reform bill is a work in progress. Even still, there are some troubling signs that the GOP plan is too generous to the wealthy while being overly burdensome to the working poor and families. There is also concern that the tax plan will increase the already monstrous deficit by as much as a trillion dollars or more over the next decade. These concerns have inspired the Catholic bishops to write the U. S. House of Representatives a letter expressing their concerns, and Sen. Bob Corker (R – TN) to vow to vote against the measure.
Reporting on the letter sent by the Catholic bishops, a November 9 article on the website for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops writes:
“According to the nonpartisan congressional Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT), households with income of $20,000 and $40,000 per year will see their taxes raised in 2023, 2025, and again in 2027. Taxes will also increase on average taxpayers earning between $10,000 and $20,000 in 2025. At the same time, significant tax breaks to the very wealthy—including millionaires and billionaires—are projected for each year.
“The bishop-chairmen highlighted positive provisions in the areas of education and modest increases to child tax credits, but stressed that the bill places ‘new and unreasonable burdens on families,’ and must be changed. Included among them are the elimination of: the adoption tax credit and adoption assistance program exclusion, the personal exemption (which will harm many larger families), the out-of-pocket medical expenses deduction, and incentives to employees and employers dependent care assistance or child care, among others.
“The letter also cautioned that the deficit could ‘be used as an argument to further restrict or end programs that help those in need, programs which are investments to help pull struggling families out of poverty.’ Finally, the Bishops called for fixes to disincentives for charitable giving and affordable housing and community revitalization development projects that will result from the legislation.”
Here are three links to read in consideration of the proposed tax bill, called the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. The first is a link to the letter sent by the Catholic bishops. I encourage you to read them and then write your Senators and Representative and let them know of your concerns.
Be Christ for all. Bring Christ to all. See Christ in all.