Tax bill a disastrous plan, fails Montana and our future

by Sen. Jon Tester

Where have the deficit-hawks flown to? Are their heads in the clouds?

If you look at the tax plan that just passed Congress, it’s clear they have flown away from Washington.

Unfortunately, some folks in Congress turned their back on future generations and passed a so-called “tax reform bill” that sells off the futures of our kids and grandkids in exchange for tax giveaways to wealthy out-of-staters.

This rushed proposal will saddle future generations of hardworking Montanans with crushing debt by adding nearly $1.5 trillion to the national deficit.

The national debt is already a hefty $20 trillion and climbing, and every man, woman, and child in the United States of America owes a $63,000 share of that.

Montana small business owners know that sometimes you have to borrow money to survive the bad years, but in the good years, you pay off that debt.

Our economy is in pretty good shape right now. We shouldn’t be taking on more crushing debt that will have to be paid off down the road. That is not how you pass down the country to the next generation.

I have long supported cutting taxes for working families and small businesses, simplifying the tax code and cutting our national debt.

But this disastrous plan fails Montanans, and it fails our future leaders.

This tax scheme not only saddles future generations with more debt, it also raises taxes on Montana families in the long run, forces cuts to Medicare, and caps deductions that allow Montanans to keep more of their hard earned money in their wallets.

This all takes place while corporate tax cuts remain permanent, inflating the bank accounts of big business and leaving the folks who do the hard work with smaller paychecks.

It didn’t have to be this way, and Montanans didn’t have to end up on the losing side of this scheme.

I offered on multiple occasions to work with President Trump and my friends on the other side of the aisle. I wrote them letters, I shared my input on issues and I invited the president to Montana so he could hear a rural perspective.

But at every point, the only response I heard back was crickets.

There is a desperate need for real tax reform in this country, and the Senate’s leaders should have listened.

Montanans need tax reform that gives a break to working-class families and small businesses, without adding to our debt.

But politicians in Washington decided to ram this through with no public input, no transparency and no analysis of how it will impact folks outside of the swamp.

This is Washington, D.C. at its worst.

That is why we are stuck with a partisan gimmick that gives the wealthiest Americans more than 80 percent of the cuts, while the rest of us pay their bill.

Montanans deserve better. Hard-working families deserve better. Our kids and our grandkids deserve better.

Like all Montanans, I care deeply about the future of our Montana and I will relentlessly keep fighting bad proposals coming out of Washington, D.C., that hurt Montanans, threaten our future, and load our kids with debt at the expense of wealthy out-of-state interests.