Biden Wants Corporate Tax Rate Between 25% and 28%

Biden Wants Corporate Tax Rate Between 25% and 28%

President Joe Biden said earlier this week that he is open to compromise on his plan to raise the corporate tax rate, and on Thursday cited a range of rates he would be willing to accept: between 25% and 28%.

Speaking to reporters in storm-battered Lake Charles, Louisiana, Biden said his plan to raise the corporate tax rate from the current 21% rate established by the 2017 GOP tax bill was inseparable from his proposal to spend more than $2 trillion on U.S. infrastructure.  

“The way I can pay for this is making sure that the largest companies don’t pay zero” while adjusting the corporate tax rate “to between 25[%] and 28[%],” Biden said. “That’s a couple hundred billion dollars, and we can pay for these things.”

The president reiterated his call for bipartisan negotiations over the proposal. “I’m willing to hear ideas from both sides,” Biden said. “I’m ready to compromise. What I’m not ready to do is, I’m not ready to do nothing. I’m not ready to have another period where America has another Infrastructure Month and it doesn’t change a damn thing.”

Biden also emphasized that one of his objectives is to restore what he sees as fairness to the tax system. “You’re entitled to be a millionaire, be a billionaire, just pay your fair share,” he said. “I’m not looking to punish anyone. I’m sick and tired of corporate America not doing their fair share.”

A familiar lower bound: The 25% rate has also been cited by Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a moderate who holds considerable sway over Biden’s plans in an evenly divided Senate. Manchin said in April that he would not support an increase in the corporate tax rate to Biden’s proposed 28%, but he could get behind an increase to 25%, which he said is the global average.

The bottom line: The White House still faces difficult negotiations over infrastructure spending and how to pay for it, but Biden has now laid down a marker to guide the talks. With Republicans saying they will oppose all tax increases, Biden’s gesture is probably aimed more at his fellow Democrats as the party weighs moving forward without GOP support.