The set of Fox & Friends seems to have confused feelings about tax loopholes, as evidenced by a segment that defended corporations’ use of tax attorneys, seconds before blaming President Joe Biden for doing the same. The segment neatly illustrates the confused messaging that Republicans need to sort out and why the White House believes that this plan will be both an economic and political winner.
It’s early April, which means tax season is upon us. In early 2021, the first few months of a new Biden Administration, taxes are in the news because of Biden and his proposal to pay for a $2.25 trillion infrastructure bill designed to upgrade many facets of American infrastructure and spur an economy still sputtering from efforts to mitigate Covid-19.
In a recent press event, Biden explained how the federal government could afford such a sizeable outlay if corporate taxes are raised to 28%, after being lowered from 25% to 21% during the Trump Administration. Introducing a clip of Biden pitching his idea on Wednesday, co-host Ainsley Earhardt derided the idea of tightening tax code loopholes but appeared to confuse her viewers with corporations by saying, “so if you find loopholes to save money for your family, you don’t have to give it to the government.
The clip of Biden was then aired, in which he referenced, “A new independent study put out last week found at least 55 of our largest corporations use the various loopholes to pay zero federal tax income tax in 2020.” Biden followed with, “It’s just not fair. It’s not fair to the rest of the American taxpayers. We’re going to try to put an end to this.”
Coming out of the clip, co-host Brian Kilmeade mocked Biden’s reasonable take, saying, “Really? How dare you try to go around and pay less taxes as corporations? I mean, that’s why you have attorneys who look at everything; loopholes exist. If people find them legally, there is nothing illegal about them.”
After establishing that taking advantage of loopholes was totally fine for all the Fox & Friends viewers who have tax attorneys at their avail, he pivoted to deriding Joe Biden for using tax attorneys to take advantage of loopholes. Yes, the larger part was about perceived hypocrisy, but one couldn’t escape the whiplash-inducing pivot of defending loophole exploitation to mocking Biden for the same.
After leaving the White House in 2017, the Bidens set up an S-corp to managed consulting and speaker fees that earned him roughly $13 million (according to Kilmeade.) I am no tax expert, but I get the sense that the proposed corporate tax rate is designed to target massive corporations like Amazon, Apple, and Exxon and not small businesses, but I am not certain about that.
So Fox & Friends viewers left this segment confused on corporate tax cuts. Yes, Biden was painted as a hypocrite, but that seems a rote position on the right-of-center opinion show. The larger issue is how does this play politically?
Former Economic Advisor to Trump Gary Cohn revealed that 21% was too low of a corporate tax rate in a recent interview. And in an interview with Bloomberg, Heather Boushey, a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, argued that the Trump corporate tax cuts were ineffective economically and politically.
Perhaps this is why a recent Morning Consult poll published Wednesday showed broad support for both Biden’s infrastructure and tax plan. Which suggests that a good number of diners that Fox & Friends chats with on the regular? They aren’t going to feel terrible about corporations paying higher taxes.
Watch above via Fox News.
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