Vermont Congressional Delegation Says Trump Tax Plan Favors Wealthy People

Oct 2, 2017

All three members of Vermont's Congressional delegation say they'll oppose President Trump's tax plan because it favors the richest Americans.

The three members of the Vermont’s Congressional delegation, Sen. Patrick Leahy, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Peter Welch, all pointed to a study conducted by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center that shows that 80% of the benefits of the plan will go the wealthiest people in this country.

When he unveiled the package, the president said he personally wouldn't be receiving a tax cut under this plan. Leahy is calling on Trump to prove it by finally releasing his tax returns.

"It's somewhat suspicious,” said Leahy. “I think we should see his tax return and see whether he is getting a special benefit from this tax plan that he's proposing."  

Republican leaders say the tax plan will fuel economic growth and will provide new revenue to pay for the proposal. Leahy is skeptical.

"That's never happened in the past there's no reason to believe it will happen today," said Leahy.

The plan lowers the highest income tax rate and it increases the lowest rate and it doubles the personal income tax deduction. It also cuts the highest corporate rate from 35 percent to 20 percent.

Sanders says the president is not being completely honest about the impact that this plan will have.

"The president is not quite telling the truth about what he has presented, most of the tax benefits in this will go to the top one percent."—Sen. Bernie Sanders

“The president is not quite telling the truth about what he has presented,” said Sanders. “Most of the tax benefits in this will go to the top one percent."  

Sanders is also outraged that the proposal includes the elimination of the estate tax.

"All of the benefits go to the very, very, very, rich so essentially that is what this proposal is about,” said Sanders.

Welch says a number of Vermonters could see their tax liability increase under this plan because it eliminates the deduction for local and state taxes.

"I'm quite concerned about what I've seen is the outlines of this tax policy and I don't think it will achieve what the stated goals are more fairness, better growth, and a stronger economy," said Welch. 

"I'm quite concerned about what I've seen is the outlines of this tax policy."—Rep. Peter Welch

Jeff Bartley is the executive director of the Vermont Republican Party. He says there's no question that the plan will evolve in the coming months and he's disappointed that Vermont's delegation is already lining up against it.

"The whole notion of reform is to allow hard working Vermonters to keep more of their paycheck and not all Democrats like our delegation are just pooh poohing it out the gate," said Bartley.

GOP Congressional leaders are expected to release additional details about their plan later this week. They hope to pass it by the end of the year.