SOUTH PORTLAND — It’s been nearly four months since Republicans in Congress rammed through their massive corporate tax cut, which is projected to explode the U.S. deficit by $1.5 trillion.

Let’s see how the new tax law is treating hardworking Americans so far:

Most Americans aren’t seeing more money in their paycheck. Just 32 percent of working adults report taking home more money because of the tax cuts, according to a recent CNBC All-America Economic Survey. Fifty-two percent of working adults say they haven’t seen a change.

Any impact has been small. Of those workers who are taking home more money, 62 percent told the CNBC pollsters that the extra pay helps either “some,” “just a little” or “does not help much at all.” Nancy Pelosi was attacked for calling the tax cuts “crumbs” for America’s workers. Turns out she may have been on to something.

The tax cut is not helping small businesses – the drivers of our economy. Small companies make up two-thirds of America’s gross domestic product and half of its workforce. They drive the economy. And yet, in polling by Businesses for Responsible Tax Reform, 70 percent of small-business owners said they would not hire a new employee as a result of the new tax law, and 60 percent of small-business owners said the tax cuts would not help them give employees raises.

Big businesses are already using the tax cuts to line their own pockets – not help their workers. The extra money the tax cuts gave companies is going to shareholders and owners – not to higher wages for employees, not to hiring new workers and not to expanding operations.

American companies in the first quarter of 2018 announced more than $178 billion in planned stock buybacks – the largest amount in a single quarter ever, The New York Times reported. Share buybacks are designed to benefit the richest 10 percent of American households – which own 84 percent of all stocks.

One of the most egregious examples: Mega-cap company Kimberly-Clark Corp. told MarketWatch earlier this year that it will use the money it saves from tax-reform legislation to help cover the costs of firing 13 percent of its employees, and to pay out more cash to its stock investors.

Maine companies are not keeping their tax-cut promises to Mainers. Many Maine-based companies and multinational businesses with locations in Maine promised they would hire more workers and boost workers’ wages once the tax bill became law. Republican Sen. Susan Collins even highlighted these companies in her efforts to sell us on her party’s tax proposal.

Here’s the latest on those businesses, courtesy of the publicly available news releases on the companies’ websites or those of their corporate parents:

n Bath Iron Works/General Dynamics. Number of announcements citing new jobs created and/or raises: 0.

n Pratt & Whitney/United Technologies. Number of announcements citing new jobs created and/or raises: 0.

n Procter & Gamble. Number of announcements citing new jobs created and/or raises: 0.

n New Balance. Number of announcements citing new jobs created and/or raises: 0 (despite landing a new $17 million government contract).

Companies in all kinds of sectors are being negatively affected by the rushed-through bill. Businesses are learning that the tax law is full of errors and mistakes because it was rushed through Congress. The New York Times reported that independent and co-op farmers, restaurant owners and retailers, among many other groups, are all being hurt by mistakes in the law – mistakes that can’t be easily or quickly fixed.

The financial markets are worried. Stocks are down for the year, and the first quarter of 2018 was the worst quarter for the stock market since 2015, according to The Wall Street Journal. Bonds in the first quarter fell by 1.46 percent. Investors are worried that the tax bill will fuel significantly higher inflation – making everyday items more expensive, cutting into economic growth, hurting corporate profits and ultimately increasing unemployment, University of Texas economist James K. Galbraith warned on MarketWatch.

That’s right – the “job-creating” tax cut could very well lead to more layoffs and more unemployed Americans searching for work.

Already, the tax law is generating the negative results and bad outcomes its critics warned about repeatedly. The Republican Party’s big promises to American workers and their families were little more than self-serving snake oil.

The good news: You can let House and Senate Republicans know exactly what you think of their lies and deceit when you walk into the voting booth this November.


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