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Rep. Buddy Carter: For tax reform, the best is yet to come

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Washington, July 20, 2018 | comments

If you had a tough Tax Day this year, you are not alone. According to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, the estimated time burden to complete IRS forms is approximately 8.1 billion hours. That is 25 hours per American and 53 hours per taxpayer. Even worse, it cost $85.6 billion to complete this paperwork, according to the IRS.

I have good news, though. When you filed your taxes earlier this year, it’s the last time you will have to navigate the old, outdated, burdensome, and overly complicated tax code or pay someone to do it for you thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

However, even as millions of people are experiencing the benefits of tax reform, some in Washington insist on revving up the partisan rhetoric to try to downplay or distract from opportunity creating pro-growth tax reform.

Just last month, one Washington Democrat went as far as saying the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is a “shameful, dark cloud of a tax break for corporate America and the richest people.” That sounds pretty ominous, but it is just not true.

For one thing, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act doubles the standard deduction. That benefit will be immediately realized by the 70 percent of taxpayers who chose not to itemize, nearly all of them middle-income.

In the 1st Congressional District of Georgia, out of 292,300 total tax returns, 207,683 use the standard deduction and 84,617 itemize. These numbers directly point to tax reform's focus on the majority of people, not the wealthy.

Additionally, when you file your taxes next year, most people will see a tax cut. The typical family of four earning $73,000 a year will get a tax cut of $2,059. That is not crumbs, but a significant raise that could help families afford a vacation, school supplies, or even extra help to ensure food can be put on the table at night.

Others in Washington continue to falsely claim that companies will use the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to line their own pockets at the expense of their customers and employees. Apparently someone forgot to tell the 600 companies that already gave bonuses or wage increases to their employees. Additionally, more than 110 utilities companies in 48 states, including many in my home state of Georgia, have already lowered electric, gas, and water rates because of tax reform.

In the 1st Congressional District of Georgia, I have visited workers and small businesses to discuss how tax reform will benefit them.

At an incredible, veteran-owned company in Savannah, I learned that, because of tax reform, the company is able to give their employees more, and it’s the difference between being able to buy Christmas presents for their children or not. At another small business in Homerville, I learned that the new tax law has allowed them to purchase new equipment to grow their company at a substantial rate.

I have seen firsthand how tax reform has allowed companies to create jobs and invest in their people and our communities. Finally, people are no longer asking, “Where are the jobs?” Now, thanks to pro-growth tax reform, we have more job openings than job seekers.

Washington Democrats seem to have a hard time accepting that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is working. At just over six months old, the facts are mounting against them.

The best part of it all? The best is yet to come.

Rep. Earl L. “Buddy” Carter, a Republican, represents Georgia's 1st Congressional District. He is the only pharmacist currently serving in Congress.

Washington Examiner

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