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Florida lawmakers pass tax cut for rich people who spend more than $1 million on yacht repairs

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The Florida legislature on Monday passed a tax cut package that included a break for yacht owners who spend more than $1 million on repairs.

The Associated Press noted that the provision capping taxes on boat repairs at $60,000 was tucked away in a package of more than $400 million in tax cuts.

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During a floor debate on Monday, Democratic Sen. Geraldine Thompson of Orlando argued that the cuts would largely benefit the wealthy.

“There are many people in my district who own boats, but none of them own boats where they would have repairs over a million dollars,” she pointed out. “In fact, the boat itself would not be worth a million dollars.”

“And so a part of this tax package limits repairs on boats — really yachts — to $60,000, but it you are a small person and you have a small boat, you’re going to have to pay these taxes,” Thompson explained. “But if you have a yacht and the repairs on your yacht are over a million dollars then it’s capped at $60,000.”

The Orlando Democrat encouraged her fellow lawmakers to consider that “the lower income person pays a higher proportion of their earnings already in taxes.”

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“This tax cut, as I look at it, does nothing to help that,” she said. “It is something that is for the wealthy and the very wealthy and does nothing for the little guy.”

Republican Sen. Jack Latvala of Clearwater, who sponsored the amendment, defended the proposed tax cut, saying that it was intended to create jobs.

“Yeah, these are big yachts,” he admitted. “But these are also yachts that go all over the country, all over the world. And they can get the repairs done in South Carolina or Georgia or North Carolina just by paying for the fuel to get up there.”

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According to Latvala, the bill was “not about saving millionaires money, it’s about getting jobs for people who aren’t millionaires.”

Watch the video below from the Florida Senate.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘I can’t analyze that’: Ex-ambassador confesses he’s unable to make sense of Trump’s Denmark and Russia rants

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Former American Ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul, confessed Thursday that not even he could figure out what happened to make the president want to get into a verbal war with Denmark.

"What is the president talking about?" asked MSNBC host Craig Melvin.

"I can't analyze that. I honestly do not — there is no logic to what he says," McFaul said in a panel discussion. "As you said at the top, he insults or allies, right when he's about to meet with them and embraces Putin. And I want to be clear, if there were some outcome to this strategy that led to better outcomes for the American people, right -- enhanced our security, enhanced our prosperity, I could applaud it. But there is no connection to these kinds of inane statements that he makes and advancing our national security interests."

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‘Hypocritical’ Republicans busted for disappearing now that Trump has exploded the deficit

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In a "Reality Check" segment on CNN on Thursday morning, contributor John Avlon called out GOP fiscal hawks who have suddenly disappeared from the public square now that a Republican president has exploded the national debt.

Introduced by host John Berman, who asked, "This morning new numbers from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirm it: The national debt and deficit are much worse than thought. So where is the party of fiscal responsibility in times like these?" Avlon broke it down.

"While President Trump was busy proclaiming himself 'the chosen one,' you might have missed more bad news in the form of data," Avlon smirked. "Brand new CBO numbers shows the budget deficit is skyrocketing, projected to rise 25 percent over last year and heading to over $1 trillion next year. Tax revenues are $430 billion below where they were expected to be before the Trump tax cuts while spending in is in drunken sailor territory adding $1.7 trillion in the next decade."

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‘Something wrong’ with Trump’s mental health — and he needs an ‘intervention’: Dem lawmaker

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Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) told CNN's John Berman that President Donald Trump's mental health should be a cause of deep concern for all Americans.

In particular, Deutch pointed to Trump's string of strange statements on Wednesday, in which he favorably quoted someone who called him "The Second Coming of God" and then flat-out referred to himself as "The Chosen One."

"If you or I had an uncle who went on social media and started making claims or tweeting claims about being the 'King of Israel' and the 'Second Coming; and then went out into public and talked about being the 'Chosen One,' you know what we would do?" he asked rhetorically. "We would gather our family members and figure out how to have an intervention because there's something clearly wrong there."

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