Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow champions herself as a friend of the working class – but when it came to the fiscal cliff, she was saving her Big Business pals first.
Stabenow was first in line at the trough as the White House and Senate loaded the cliff bill with corporate goodies.
“Michigan Democrat Debbie Stabenow was able to retain an accelerated tax write-off for owners of NASCAR tracks (cost: $78 million) to benefit the paupers who control the Michigan International Speedway,” reports The Wall Street Journal editorial page. Other beneficiaries included GE, Goldman Sachs, and Star-Kist Tuna.
While Stabenow also applauded the $400k individual tax rate hike, her corporate cronies were cheerleading with her – because small business people with Subchapter S Corps. are more likely hammered by such rate hikes. Meanwhile, publicly-traded Big Business got a break on dividend taxes – and all that yummy pork.
Alex Brill, a former aide to GOPers on the House Ways and Means Committee, explains that many questionable tax breaks - like the motorsports benefit backed by International Speedway Corp. and Stabenow (Debbie’s Michigan friends at Whirlpool and the biofuels industry also got breaks) – are often made temporary in such catch-all bills. Why?
“If you make them permanent, you get the campaign contribution once,” explains Bob McIntyre, director of Citizens for Tax Justice. “You do it every year or two, they have to ante up again and again.”