U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), a member of the tax-writing Senate Finance Committee and a key voice during the tax reform debate, today discussed the positive effects the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has had on the American economy. Thune explained that by lowering tax rates for owners of small and medium-sized businesses, expanding business owners’ ability to recover investments they make in their businesses, lowering our nation’s massive corporate tax rate (up until January 1, 2018, the United States had the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world), and updating to a modernized territorial tax system, the economy is seeing immediate positive results.
Thune’s remarks (as prepared for delivery)
“Mr. President, the good news about tax reform continues to roll in.
“So far, more than 250 companies have announced good news for their employees – pay hikes, increased retirement contributions, or bonuses – and the list continues to grow.
“Last week, JP Morgan Chase, Disney, Starbucks, and FedEx all announced increased investment in American workers.
“JP Morgan Chase announced that it will raise wages for 22,000 workers, add thousands of jobs, and open 400 new branches in the United States.
“It also plans to increase its lending to small businesses.
“Disney will invest in employees’ education and provide employee bonuses.
“Starbucks is raising wages, increasing benefits, and rewarding employees with company stock.
“And FedEx announced plans to expedite raises and invest $1.5 billion to expand its FedEx Express hub in Indianapolis.
“It’s also making a $1.5 billion contribution to its pension plan.
“And to top it off, yesterday Exxon Mobil announced that thanks in part to tax reform, it will invest an additional $35 billion in the U.S. economy over the next five years.
“That means a lot of new jobs and opportunities for American workers.
“Mr. President, stories like this are why we made business tax reform a key part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
“Obviously, a huge priority was immediately lowering Americans’ tax bills, which is why we lowered rates across the board, nearly doubled the standard deduction, and doubled the child tax credit.
“But our other priority was creating the kind of economy in which Americans can thrive for the long term.
“An economy that would create good jobs, higher wages, and more opportunities.
“So how did we go about doing that?
“Well, the only way for individual Americans to thrive is for American businesses and the American economy to thrive.
“And so we took action to improve the situation for American businesses.
“Prior to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, American businesses large and small were weighed down by high tax rates and growth-killing tax provisions.
“Plus, our outdated international tax rules left America’s global businesses at a competitive disadvantage in the global economy.
“The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act changed all that.
“We lowered tax rates across the board for owners of small and medium-sized businesses, farms, and ranches.
“We expanded business owners’ ability to recover investments they make in their businesses, which will free up cash that they can reinvest in their operations and their workers.
“We lowered our nation’s massive corporate tax rate, which up until January 1 was the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world.
“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, just a month into the new tax law, we’re already seeing the results.
“Thanks to the new tax law, businesses are seeing a future of growth, and based on those forecasts, they’re making plans to invest in their workers, raise wages, create new jobs, and invest in the U.S. economy.
“Bank of America.
“Great Western Bank.
“First Hawaiian Bank.
“The list of companies announcing good news for American workers thanks to tax reform goes on and on.
“Tech giant Apple announced that as a result of tax reform, it will bring home almost $250 billion in cash it has been keeping overseas and invest in the United States.
“That’s good news for the American economy.
“And it’s a direct result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
“Before the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, our tax code encouraged American businesses to keep cash overseas.
“The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act ended that.
“Now that we’ve altered the tax code to remove the penalty for bringing profits home to the United States, we can expect to see more companies bringing profits home and investing in the U.S. economy the way Apple is.
“Mr. President, we’ve seen a tremendous amount of good news this month, but this is only the beginning.
“As the benefits of tax reform continue to sink in, we can expect to see more growth, more jobs, and more opportunities for American workers.
“And we can expect to see the kind of economy that will provide security and prosperity for Americans for the long term.”