MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa – Taking aim at how corporate America has rigged the economy, Bernie Sanders on Friday pledged to close tax loopholes like a law that lets profitable corporations exploit offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes.
“Three major profitable corporations not only pay nothing in federal income taxes, they actually got a rebate from the IRS,” Sanders told a town meeting in a student center at Iowa Wesleyan University.
Overall, General Electric, Boeing and Verizon paid no federal income taxes during the combined 2008 through 2013 tax years. During that period, those three corporate giants racked up combined profits totaling more than $102 billion. In fact, they received income tax rebates from the Internal Revenue Service totaling more than $4.1 billion, according to a report from Citizens for Tax Justice.
“In America today we are losing $100 billion in revenue every single year because large corporations are stashing their profits in the Cayman Islands and other offshore tax havens,” Sanders said.
Sanders’ tax plan would close loopholes those and other corporations have exploited and use the revenue to create and maintain at least 13 million good-paying jobs by rebuilding our crumbling roads, bridges, water systems, railways, airports and more.
Sanders singled out GE, Boeing, Verizon and others on his Top 10 list of corporate tax dodgers during a swing through eastern Iowa three days before Iowa’s precinct caucuses. The senator from Vermont also has detailed a plan to reform the tax system
To crack down on corporate tax avoiders, Sanders would:
- End a rule allowing American corporations to defer paying federal income taxes on profits of offshore subsidiaries. Under current law, U.S. corporations are allowed to defer or delay U.S. income taxes on overseas profits until the money is brought back into the United States.
- Prevent corporations from avoiding U.S. taxes by claiming to be a foreign company through the establishment of a post office box in a tax-haven country.
- Eliminate tax breaks for big oil, gas, and coal companies.
- Stop American companies from avoiding U.S. taxes through corporate inversions.
- Close loopholes that allow U.S. corporations to artificially inflate or accelerate foreign tax credits.
To see the list of the Top-10 corporate tax avoiders, click here.
To read more about Sanders’ plan to reform the corporate tax code, click here.