U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), a member of the tax-writing Senate Finance Committee, this week discussed the results of two recent surveys that show how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is continuing to have a positive effect on American businesses. The National Association of Manufacturers’ survey showed that 77 percent of manufacturers plan to increase hiring as a result of tax reform, 72 percent plan to increase wages or benefits, and 86 percent report that they plan to increase investments. A survey from the National Federation of Independent Business showed that 75 percent of small business owners think that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will have a positive effect on their businesses.
Thune’s remarks (as prepared for delivery):
“Mr. President, tax reform is working.
“The results of two surveys released last week show that tax reform is doing exactly what it’s supposed to be doing for American workers.
“Our goal with tax reform was simple: make life better for American workers.
“And so we took action to put more money in Americans’ pockets right away.
“We cut tax rates across the board, nearly doubled the standard deduction, and doubled the child tax credit.
“And Americans are already seeing this relief in their paychecks.
“But we knew that tax cuts, as essential as they were, were not enough.
“In order to make life better for American workers, we also needed to make sure that Americans had access to good jobs, good wages, and good opportunities – the kinds of jobs and opportunities that would set them up for security and prosperity for the long term.
“And since jobs and opportunities are created by businesses, that meant reforming our tax code to improve the playing field for businesses so that they could improve the playing field for workers.
“And that’s what we did.
“And I’m proud to report that it’s working.
“Last week, the National Association of Manufacturers released the results of its recent tax reform survey.
“Here’s what the survey showed:
“77 percent of manufacturers plan to increase hiring as a result of tax reform.
“72 percent plan to increase wages or benefits.
“And 86 percent report they plan to increase investments – which means new jobs and opportunities for workers.
“Mr. President, these are tremendous results.
“And they’re exactly what we were looking for with tax reform.
“Government can make sure it isn’t taking too much money out of Americans’ pockets, but it can’t create the jobs and opportunities Americans need for long-term economic security and prosperity.
“Only businesses can do that.
“But government can make sure that businesses are free to create jobs by making sure they’re not weighed down with burdensome taxes and regulations.
“And that’s exactly what we set out to do with tax reform.
“Before the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the government was not helping businesses to create jobs.
“In fact, it was doing the opposite.
“And that had real consequences for American workers.
“A small business owner struggling to afford the hefty annual tax bill for her business was highly unlikely to be able to hire a new worker or raise wages.
“A larger business struggling to stay competitive in the global marketplace while paying a substantially higher tax rate than its foreign competitors too often had limited funds to expand or increase investment in the United States.
“And so when it came time for tax reform, we set out to improve the playing field for American workers by improving the playing field for businesses as well.
“To accomplish that, we lowered tax rates across the board for owners of small and medium-sized businesses, farms, and ranches.
“We lowered our nation’s massive corporate tax rate, which up until January 1 was the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world.
“We expanded business owners’ ability to recover investments they make in their businesses, which frees up cash that they can reinvest in their operations and their workers.
“And we brought the U.S. international tax system into the 21st century by replacing our outdated “worldwide” system with a modernized territorial tax system, so that American businesses are not operating at a disadvantage next to their foreign competitors.
“And now we’re seeing the results.
“I’ll say it again:
“77 percent of manufacturers – 77 percent – are planning to increase hiring.
“72 percent are planning to increase wages or benefits.
“And 86 percent are planning to increase investments – which creates new jobs and opportunities for American workers.
“And I haven’t even mentioned last week’s other survey, on small businesses.
“The National Federation of Independent Business released a survey last week that shows that 75 percent of small business owners think that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will have a positive effect on their businesses.
“The survey also showed that among small business owners who expect to pay less in taxes next year, 44 percent plan to increase employee compensation, and more than a quarter plan to hire new employees.
“And those numbers may get even better.
“As the survey shows, small businesses are just starting to explore all the benefits of the new tax law, since small businesses, unlike large businesses, don’t have full-time tax departments to plan for and take into account the new tax changes.
“Most small businesses spend the first part of each year focused on preparing and filing their taxes from the prior year – not to mention running their businesses – which means with Tax Day now behind them, they’re just now having the chance to explore the benefits of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
“In addition, their tax advisers – many of whom are often small businesses themselves – have also wrapped up most of their filing-season responsibilities.
“They can now help their small business clients with factoring the new tax changes into their business plans.
“Mr. President, American workers had a tough time during the last administration.
“Wages stagnated, and jobs and opportunities were often few and far between.
“But thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and other Republican initiatives, our economy is turning around.
“Unemployment is at its lowest level in more than 17 years.
“Economists have upped their projections for economic growth.
“And the good news for American workers just keeps piling up.
“Better benefits.“Mr. President, the American dream is roaring back, and the future is looking bright.”