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Jeff Flake throws cold water on GOP plan to make tax cuts permanent

Conservative Review

Senator Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., on Thursday said that individual tax cuts were not needed and signaled opposition to making the individual tax cuts permanent.

Flake, speaking at a fiscal policy summit hosted by the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, said that making the tax cuts permanent would be an "act of bad faith" and said he would have preferred Republicans to keep taxes higher for individuals, CQ reported.

“I’m going to have problems wanting to make the individual tax cuts permanent without some offsets somewhere, or some agreement to deal with mandatory spending,” Flake said. “I just think that is an act of bad faith to pass something to fit it under the budget window, then as soon as you get [past] that political peril, you go and have a show vote to make the tax cuts permanent, when all it is is an election maneuver.”

The Republican tax cuts were passed under budget reconciliation, a process that made it necessary to add an expiration date for the individual side of the tax cuts package. In 2025, the changes to the individual tax cuts will revert to where they were before the tax cuts unless Congress acts to make the tax cuts permanent. House and Senate Republicans are debating on bringing a measure to do just that — a measure Flake apparently opposes.

Flake also denied that individual tax cuts had any stimulating effect on the economy, though he defended his vote for the tax cut package.

“We needed to do what we did. Not on the individual side,” he said. “If you want stimulative effects, you get that lowering the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21. You don’t get it from lowering the marginal rate from 39 to 36.”

A lower individual tax rate means more money in the paychecks of every working American. Does Flake agree with Nancy Pelosi, then, that these tax cuts were "crumbs?"

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