August 02, 2017

Van Hollen: Tax Reform Should Not Include Tax Breaks for the Wealthy

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen joined MSNBC's Morning Joe to discuss Democratic priorities for tax reform. An excerpt of the interview is below:

"We just actually sent a letter to Mitch McConnell - we, meaning the Democrats in the Senate - saying that we're happy to work with them on genuine tax reform. We're not interested in providing another round of windfall tax breaks to very, very wealthy people. We don't think that's the priority in the country.

"But we asked them to follow Senator McCain's advice: let's work through the regular order, let's have hearings when it comes to tax reform. And we also are very concerned that they're going to blow a hole in the deficit and debt by providing big tax breaks. What we saw in the early 2000s was that trickle down didn't work. We had the Bush tax cuts. They spiked the deficit way up. They didn't do anything for regular working people.

"There are things we can do to simplify our tax code. There is a lot of junk in there that was put in by people who were able to hire powerful special interest lobbyists. We need to clean a lot of that stuff out - but we are not interested in an exercise that is just a back-door effort to provide tax breaks to very wealthy people. Kind of like the health care bill, which cut health care benefits to tens of millions of Americans in order to provide big tax breaks to very wealthy folks."