Corporations lobby for tax break on offshore profits

| 24/10/2011

(iwatch): Goaded by battalions of corporate lobbyists, members of Congress are working to give a select group of US multinational firms like Apple, Oracle and Pfizer a lavish tax break on a trillion dollars stashed offshore. The goal is to generate jobs and investment, but the offshore tax holiday was tried before, in 2004, and the lion’s share of the benefits went not to unemployed workers and their families, but to corporate shareholders and executives.  With today’s high unemployment, and soaring costs for college, health care and other family essentials, critics are asking why an elite class of corporations and their shareholders should get a huge tax break on overseas profits.

The proposed tax holiday could cost the Treasury from $40 billion to $80 billion over the next decade, and the high cost of the measure is one reason that its prospects for passage are mixed.

But 73 members of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, have signed up as co-sponsors. And cash-rich mega corporations are pushing hard for the tax break.

A number of trade groups and corporations that would benefit have joined in a coalition called WIN America. New lobbying disclosure reports show that the group and its member firms have spent millions of dollars, and employed dozens of lobbyists, to press for the tax break, according to an analysis by iWatch News.

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