Tax bill failures pile up, but Rep. Steve Knight just keeps promoting it

Congressman Steve Knight

Lower wages. Higher national deficit. Higher taxes for homeowners. Billions for Wall Street.

Almost eight months after the Republican tax bill was signed into law, economic indicators show the bill is failing to help families, but it’s a boon for wealthy Wall Street tycoons. Despite all the evidence, Congressman Steve Knight (R-Palmdale) remains committed to sticking by his vote for the bill.

A recent New York Times editorial lays out an abundance of evidence showing the Republican tax bill falling far short of promises from Republicans like Knight. In the end, the Times concluded “it doesn’t do any of what they promised.”

The big winners in the tax bill are rich corporate executives and fancy Wall Street investors. Thanks to a bill written to favor wealthy corporations, stock buybacks are hitting record levels, and expected to top $1 trillion this year.

“Share buybacks have an understandable appeal to executives, many of whom are compensated with stock themselves, and to investors,” writes the Times. “But buybacks do little for workers, most of whom own little or no stock.”

What do workers get? Lower wages.

“The idea that the tax cuts were going to line workers’ pockets was always a mirage,” says the Times. In fact, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows the real average hourly earnings for all employees is less in July 2018 than it was in July 2017.

For Californians, the tax bill has additional negative consequences. A report from California’s Franchise Tax Board shows that about a million Californians are on the hook for $12 billion in additional taxes this year. For homeowners in Los Angeles, a new 30-year mortgage will cost up to $76,000 more, thanks to provisions in the tax bill supported by Knight.

In return for lower wages today and higher taxes tomorrow, Knight helped saddle the next generation with trillions in additional debt. The tax bill is on pace to add almost $2 trillion to the national deficit.

Knight calls the high national debt “morally wrong” and “a blatant act of generational theft” on his campaign website.

But when asked in early August if he has any regrets about voting for the bill, Knight emphatically said no. Even after the Times published their lengthy piece about the tax bill’s failures, Knight tweeted out support of it.

It seems Knight is content to, in his view, steal from the children of tomorrow, so long as Wall Street tycoons can pad their already-full coffers.