During the Senate-House conference committee hearing on the Republican tax scam bill, Senators Bernie Sanders, Ron Wyden, and Sander Levin angrily attacked the GOP and their “ultimate betrayal” of a tax bill.
Senator Bernie Sanders, who spoke first stated:
“This legislation, which will have a major impact on our economy, has not had one public hearing. No hearing from economists, from governors, from mayors, from the business community, from ordinary Americans as to what the impact of this legislation will be. This is legislation written for wealth campaign contributors and I want to congratulate some of my Republican colleagues for being honest about that. What they said publicly is that if they don’t pass this bill their wealthy friends will stop contributing. I appreciate that honesty. This legislation in fact not only had no public hearings, but it did have some six thousand Washington D.C. lobbyists working on it behind closed doors.”
Sanders, then went on to state that an overwhelming majority of Americans don’t support the bill:
“Mr. chairman, every poll that I have seen shows that by overwhelming numbers the American people do not want this bill to be passed. They know that in the Senate bill in the midst of massive income wealth and inequality, 62% of the benefits go to the top 1% and 42% of the benefits go to the top 1/10th of 1%. In America today, the very wealthy are becoming much more wealthy while the middle class continues to shrink. And your solution is to give 62 percent of the benefits to the top 1%. The American people also understand that at the end of 10 years, 83 million middle class families will see their taxes go up under the Senate bill. They know that with 13 million Americans losing their health insurance, health care premiums on the individual market will increase by 10 percent. And they know that despite the Republicans telling us how concerned you are by the deficit, the deficit is going to go up by $1.4 trillion over the next 10 years. And what the American people are also deeply concerned about is what House Speaker Ryan is talking about. And what he is talking about is that after you raise the deficit by $1.4 trillion by giving huge tax breaks to the wealthy and large corporations, you’re going to come back and you’re going to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, and Education, and the needs of working families.”
Senator Sanders continued his outrage, stating his obvious position:
“What kind of decency is that? When we have legislation that gives massive tax breaks to billionaires and then comes back in months to come back to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This bill must not be passed.”
Senator Wyden spoke next, just as deeply disturbed by the Republicans efforts at secrecy and collusion:
“The American people are witnessing a masterclass in how one political party, relying on secrecy, distortion, and brute force, can muscle an unpopular deficit exploding, corporate giveaway to passage.”
Wyden stated that the GOP tax bill and the GOP’s efforts to conceal as much of it as possible is “the ultimate betrayal of the middle class.”
He went on:
“[The bill] doesn’t give middle class Americans the tax cuts they deserve now and it takes away Medicare and Social Security later. News just broke that Republicans just reached a final agreement, so let’s understand that’s what’s happening today is a SHAM. Tis is an obvious attempt to lend credibility to a baseless Republican talking point about following regular order. Nobody outta mistake this conference for real debate. Not when Republicans and special interest lobbyists have already wrapped up the real talks in secret.
You can watch the full video and all three Senator’s speeches above.