Driving the Week: Obama's Tax Deal

Everyone agrees that Americans do not deserve a tax hike on January 1st. Instead of presenting a simple plan that extended the current tax rates, stopping the massive tax hike, President Obama created a typical Washington plan.

Late last week, the deal finally became public as legislation introduced in the Senate. As more details came to light, it’s clear this messy deal is more about politics as usual and less about sensible tax policy. Heritage Action is opposed to any tax deal that includes favors designed to buy certain votes and appease special interest groups.

Click for more on the “hawkeye handouts” deal and how to stop it.

The Wall Street Journal labeled Obama’s favor-filled plan the “hawkeye handouts”:

The greater political risk here is for Republicans, who should worry that the tax bill is turning into a special interest spectacle. The bill revives a $1 a gallon biodiesel tax credit at a cost of nearly $2 billion, and there’s $202 million for “incentives for alternative fuel,” $331 million for a 50% tax credit for maintaining railroad tracks, and so on. These credits are a form of special interest spending via the tax code, which is precisely the business as usual behavior that Republicans told tea party voters they wouldn’t engage in.

These business subsidies are grease for Senate votes in favor of the deal, so the only chance to remove them would be the kind of public outcry that attacked the Cornhusker Kickback and other ObamaCare fiascoes. Call these ethanol favors the Hawkeye Handouts.

Read more of “The Hawkeye Handouts” at The Wall Street Journal.

Even the Associated Press is calling Obama’s tax deal a Christmas tree because of its gifts for lobbyists and Members of Congress.

The Senate is poised to take a first vote this afternoon, and as the deal is sponsored by both Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, it is likely to pass. The House will be a bigger battle, where an unlikely alliance of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans may block the plan. Thus there may be a chance to clean up the plan and push for sound tax policy.

Take action: call your Members of Congress and urge them to oppose the special interest provisions in Obama’s tax deal.

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