Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor this evening in opposition to House Republicans' unpaid-for legislation to permanently extend the research and development tax credit, which would add $155 billion to the deficit. Below are his remarks and a link to the video:
Click here to watch the video.
“Mr. Speaker, I rise with a great deal of sadness. We're punting. USA Today said: ‘House action on tax extenders forfeits credibility on deficits and national debt.’ They are right.
“The distinguished Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, who is my friend, offered a real bill on tax reform. The problem with that real bill is, it had tough choices to make. Congratulations to Mr. Camp for having the courage to suggest those tough choices.
“This vote today requires absolutely no courage. At all. It gives the ice cream and says forget about the spinach. It is the reason that we have trillions of dollars in debt today on our national debt, because we didn't pay for the 2001 or 2003 tax cuts.
“Now, Mr. Camp will tell me that I voted for the R&D tax cut six times that were temporary, that were annual – that were not a permanent change in the base. That's what [Republicans] want to do. That's what you did in 2001 and 2003. Now, that's all inside jargon. And, yes, you didn't waive statutory PAYGO, which we passed, which USA Today says was one of the reasons we got to balance four years in a row. That's why.
“I have three minutes to discuss with the American public why their country is going to be put deeper into debt by passing this legislation. It's good legislation, if it were paid for. It was good legislation when it was included in Mr. Camp's overall tax reform bill. But it is very bad policy and very bad legislation in this unpaid for, discrete form. And by the way, there's about another $160 billion of debt to follow.
“What a sad day for America. What a sad day for this House. What a sad day for the Ways and Means Committee. What a sad day for fiscal responsibility.
“Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues not to vote for the temporary political benefit of saying you gave somebody a tax cut, but vote for fiscal responsibility. Vote to keep on a path of a big deal to solve the fiscal challenges that confront our country. I urge my colleagues to vote no, and I yield back the balance of my time.”