Democrats attack “GOP tax scam”

Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi with another recent messaging effort

It is very rare for the Democratic Party to come up with a phrase, and have members hammer it home in unison. Thus, it’s noteworthy that leading Democrats are doing just that regarding the Republican U.S. Senate and U.S. House tax bills released over the past week. The Democrats are using the phrase “GOP Tax Scam” to attack these plans. Here is a sampling of those Democratic attacks on Twitter:

Apparently, the Democrats’ messaging is also taking hold outside of the nation’s capital. For example, this letter to the editor of The Olympian newspaper, serving Olympia, Washington, is titled “President Trump’s tax scam” and closes with the term “Trump Tax Scam.” Likewise, the #GOPTaxScam hashtag used in the examples by Democratic members of Congress cited above is also being widely used by others on Twitter.

Although the current House and Senate bills differ in several respects, Democrats are using the term “scam” here, because the Republican tax bills reportedly would lower taxes for many corporations, millionaires and billionaires. The result of these tax cuts would, in the House bill, increase America’s debt by a hefty $1.7 trillion. In return, the Republican bills would inflict significant pain on middle class and lower income Americans to try to make up some of the shortfall. For example, the House bill would get rid of the home mortgage deduction, the deduction for medical expenses, and even the deduction for state and local income and sales taxes, all of which are widely used by middle income taxpayers. Also under the House bill, students would no longer be able to deduct interest payments on their loans. And even teachers would be hit, by the elimination of their deduction for purchasing classroom materials with their own money. According to Paul Waldman in the Washington Post:

the basic conclusion is becoming clear: Many, many people — into the millions or even tens of millions — will be paying higher taxes under the Republican bill.

As we have chronicled previously, while the Republicans excel at using loaded phrases to frame items in their favor, the Democrats hardly ever do so. Accordingly, “GOP Tax Scam” is remarkable. Now we will see if it is effective.

Photo from office of Nancy Pelosi, used under Creative Commons license.

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