N.J. deserves better than the Bernie Sanders budget | Smith

Vermont Senators Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders visit with Vermont Army National Guard's 172nd Cavalry Regiment, 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain), headquartered in Jericho, Vermont., Friday, January 22. The Soldiers are in the Capitol to conduct security, communication, and logistical missions in support of federal and District authorities leading up and through the 59th Presidential Inauguration.

Americans simply cannot afford trillions of dollars in new taxes and spending and I join my Republican colleagues in strongly opposing this irresponsible budget.

The author of this massive new tax and spend proposal, Bernie Sanders—Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee—and the Democratic leadership are ramming this highly partisan bill through Congress without serious consideration of its potentially disastrous impact on working people and the economy.

My constituents deserve better than this.

When will we return to working across the aisle in a bipartisan way? 

After all of the suffering and economic pain endured by the people of my district and throughout the country during the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Bernie Sanders budget:  Imposes a major expansion of the “death tax” by taxing unrealized capital gains at death. Doubles the capital gains tax to 43.4 percent; Raises the tax rate for many businesses—including at least 2 million small businesses—from 21 to 28 percent and much more.

Small businesses in particular should not face additional tax burdens as they struggle to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizations such as the New Jersey Business Coalition and the US Chamber of Commerce expressed alarm at these proposals, and the National Federation of Independent Businesses stated, “increased taxes on small businesses mean less investment in employees, less investment in small businesses, and less economic growth.”

According to the Senate Republican leadership on the Budget Committee, the reckless Tax and Spend Plan (Table A) includes:

  • $4.2 trillion in new spending over 10 years:
    • $3.5 trillion in new mandatory spending (details below in Table B)
    • $263 billion in new discretionary spending, and
    • $390 billion in increased interest on the debt.
  • National debt soars to $40 trillion (119% of GDP) by 2031.
  • Total debt (subject to limit) soars to $45 trillion (134% of GDP) by 2031.
  • Nearly $400 billion in defense cuts compared to current law projections.
  • Deficits that average $1.6 trillion annually under the plan, reaching $2.2 trillion by 2031.
  • A pathway to trillions of dollars in new taxes. According to supporting documents provided by Chairman Sanders, the $3.5 trillion reckless tax and spend spree will be “fully offset.” Because the Finance Committee was given a broad reconciliation instruction that did not require or disclose a specific level of revenue, this can be accomplished entirely by raising $3.5 trillion in new taxes. There is no restriction on the amount of tax increases allowed under this budget resolution or through the fast-track reconciliation process.

Especially in New Jersey—one of the highest taxed and highest cost-of-living states in the Nation—taxpayers need relief, not the higher taxes created to pay for this budget bill.

Chris Smith
About Chris Smith 14 Articles
CHRIS SMITH serves New Jersey's 4th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.