Weekly Columns

High prices at the pump, increasing costs at the grocery store and excessive monthly energy bills are all devastating for the hardworking Arkansans trying to make ends meet. For at least one northeast Arkansas resident, rising expenses made it too difficult to continue running his contracting business, so he closed the doors. We need policies that support small businesses, decrease the cost of fuel and food, and help grow paychecks. Instead, President Biden and congressional Democrats are on a reckless tax-and-spending spree. More spending and tax hikes are not the answer.

While we’re experiencing a 41-year high inflation rate, the president and his allies are pursuing a plan out of touch with the priorities of the American people. In June, Arkansans spent an additional $577 as a result of inflation. This legislation fails deliver the relief Americans are demanding.

Far-fetched claims about the Biden plan reducing inflation were almost immediately debunked by the Penn Wharton Budget Model. Instead, it found the tax-and-spending bill will actually increase inflation over the next two years and then have no measurable positive long-term impact.

Not only does the Biden plan fail to tackle the current economic crisis, but it would also raise taxes on low- and middle-income earners. A tax increase is not just what I think would happen, but it is what an analysis by the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation determined.

The president is proposing job-killing tax hikes, enhanced IRS enforcement and Green New Deal policies that could worsen energy security and food security concerns while pushing us further into a recession.  

After we’ve just been reminded of the importance of domestic production, the National Association of Manufacturers worries this bill could reduce our national output by $68.5 billion and result in more than 218,000 fewer workers in the economy.

Its tax on American manufacturers is a backdoor attempt by the president and his party to impose a rate increase on companies and penalize workers, ultimately making them less competitive globally and encouraging job offshoring. 

If that’s not bad enough, this reckless plan would funnel an additional $80 billion to the IRS to hire another 87,000 agents for enforcement of noncompliance by all taxpayers regardless of income.

This is extremely troublesome given the IRS’s history of targeting faith-based organizations. The Biden administration wants to arm the IRS with more authority and manpower to pay for its far-left wish list, including imposing extreme environmental policies. Further attacking American-made energy will continue to drive up the costs to heat and cool our homes and operate our vehicles. 

When it comes to agriculture policy, this bill sets a particularly bad precedent for farm bill programs. 

As the lead Republican on the Senate agriculture committee, I’m alarmed this backroom, partisan approach eliminates input from farmers, ranchers and producers. It’s their farm bill too and they must have a say on it.

By extending conservation programs until 2031, well beyond the life of the next two farm bills, the tax-and-spending bill deliberately takes away our ability to change and adjust these farm programs to meet the future needs of our nation.  

Arkansans are already suffering the consequences of the Biden administration’s spending spree. My bottom line is I won’t support this Biden plan and risk raising our taxes.