WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden said Thursday he would see a corporate tax rate “between 25 and 28” percent, setting a new milestone in ongoing negotiations to finance a major infrastructure bill.
“The way I can pay for this is by making sure the biggest companies don’t pay zero and cutting costs [2017 corporate] Tax cut to between 25[%] and 28[%]”Said Biden at an event in Louisiana.” That’s a few hundred billion dollars and we can pay for these things. “
The remarks were the first time Biden explicitly acknowledged that his original proposal to raise the corporate tax rate from the current 21% to 28% was postponed amid negotiations on the massive infrastructure bill.
Biden’s signed domestic policy bill, known as the American Employment Plan, would invest $ 2 trillion in rebuilding large sections of U.S. infrastructure, from roads and bridges to expanded broadband.
Biden has pledged to fund the bill without increasing the federal deficit, primarily by increasing the corporate tax rate, which was cut under the Trump administration’s 2017 Tax Cut and Jobs Act.
President Joe Biden claps his fist with a man before commenting on his American employment plan near the Calcasieu River Bridge in Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States on May 6, 2021.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
The 25% rate has already been endorsed by West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, who is likely to have the greatest control over the fate of the law, provided Biden cannot persuade any of Manchin’s Republican colleagues to support him.
So far, Republicans in Congress have said any change to the 2017 tax cut law would mean a red line for the GOP.
Senate Minority Chairman Mitch McConnell predicted this week that Biden would not get a single Republican vote on the American employment plan or on its companion bill, the American family-centered family plan.
A White House spokeswoman said earlier Thursday that negotiations between the White House and lawmakers on both parties over the details of the infrastructure package will continue this week.
Republicans have released the outline of a counteroffer and proposed a tight infrastructure bill that is a quarter the size of the Biden plan. It has yet to be seriously examined.
Against the backdrop of the aging Calcasieu River Bridge in Lake Charles on Thursday, Biden also signaled that he wants to put Republicans in the difficult political position of having to publicly decide to protect their 2017 corporate tax cuts rather than creating thousands of workers.
“This is about making a choice, a choice between tax breaks for the super-rich and corporations and investing in working families,” he said.
Despite the partisan thrusts, Biden insisted he was still open to negotiating a non-partisan deal with Republicans before attempting to pass the infrastructure bill in a pure party line vote.
“I’m ready to compromise. What I’m not ready, I am not ready not to do anything,” said Biden. “I’m not ready for another period in which America has another ‘infrastructure month’ and nothing changes.”