The number of companies paying zilch in corporate taxes roughly doubled last year — and the effects of President Donald Trump’s tax reform bill could have a major impact on next year’s Democratic primary.
Democratic candidates like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have reminded voters of a recent report that 60 companies on the Fortune 500 list paid no federal taxes on $79 billion in corporate income last year — and many received a rebate, reported the New York Times.
“Amazon, Netflix and dozens of major corporations, as a result of Trump’s tax bill, pay nothing in federal taxes,” Sanders said last week during a Fox News town hall event. “I think that’s a disgrace.”
The American people are sick and tired of profitable corporations like Amazon, General Motors, Chevron and Delta making billions in profits, but paying nothing in federal income taxes. Working together, we will end a rigged tax code and political system. https://t.co/u2p93SXuGT
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) April 29, 2019
Workers are noticing, and they’re doing something about it.
“One of the benefits of taxation is taking it and using it for the collective good,” said Colin Robertson, a 25-year-old who makes $18,000 cleaning carpets. “(Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos) could be taxed at 99.9 percent and still have millions left over, and I’d be homeless.”
Robertson’s concerns about wealth inequality recently led him to join Akron’s chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America, which has about 100 members, many of whom back Sanders.
“If we’re fighting for something, what version of the thing are we fighting for?” said 37-year-old philosophy professor David Pereplyotchik, another group member. “It seems like if you just make them pay employees more, they’re just not going to hire employees.”
Amazon is believed to be considering a move into an abandoned Akron shopping mall that would employee 500 people.
Under Warren’s detailed tax plan, the online retail giant would have paid $698 million instead of $0, and Sanders has talked about closing loopholes and preventing companies from stashing profits in overseas tax havens.
But Robertson said nationalizing the companies would work better than another revision to tax laws.
“I think forcing them to pay higher alone is inefficient, and taxation alone is inefficient,” he said.