Mike Pence’s foundation launches a $10 million election-year campaign to preserve Trump-era tax cuts


WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Vice President Mike Pence’s foundation is launching a $10 million campaign to preserve the Trump-era tax cuts that are set to expire after next year as he presses conservatives not to stray from the fight before the November election.

Advancing American Freedom released a 13-page blueprint Thursday with arguments being made to Capitol Hill and to voters in swing states, particularly in those that could decide control of the Senate.

“We will be urging conservative leaders to join us in this fight,” according to the document.

The group envisions a lengthy campaign that will spin into 2025 when the White House and Congress will have to decide whether to keep the tax code as approved in the 2017 tax law when Republican Donald Trump was president or make adjustments. If nothing is done, many of the individual tax policies would expire after 2025.

Much will depend on power centers in the House and Senate and which party controls the White House.

Democratic President Joe Biden has proposed keeping the tax cuts for people making under $400,000 a year while raising the corporate rate and introducing higher taxes on the wealthy. Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for the White House, also wants to keep the tax cuts for many households, but he proposes lowering the corporate tax rate to 20%, from the current 21% rate.

“Washington has a spending problem, not a revenue problem,” Pence said in a statement. “Our national debt is out of control, and taxing the American people more is not the solution.”

Former Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, a Republican who was instrumental in crafting the 2017 tax bill, is a strong supporter of the foundation’s campaign to extend the tax policies.

The push comes as Congress has quietly begun workshopping tax policy before next year’s session, when lawmakers must address the issue or risk allowing some of the 2017 policies to expire, potentially raising taxes for many individuals.

The federal balance sheet is in the red, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said this week, with spending outpacing revenue. That is in large part because of the COVID-era outlays, funding for the war in Ukraine and the costs of Medicare, Medicaid and other programs particularly to care for an aging U.S. population.

A CBO report in May estimated that extending the provisions of Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would increase deficits by nearly $5 trillion into 2034.

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