U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., today voted against the payroll tax holiday conference report (H.R.3630) and said the legislation is a ”complete failure of leadership” that “puts us in denial over our nation’s unsustainable and growing debt.” The bill, which passed the House and Senate today, extends the payroll tax holiday, unemployment benefits, and a fix for Medicare physician reimbursement rates for 10 months, adding $90 billion to the deficit, and the portion that is paid for is financed over 10 years. This year alone the federal deficit is projected to be $1.1 trillion.
“Paying for 10 months of expenditures over 10 years while adding $90 billion to the deficit is a complete failure of leadership and puts us in denial over our nation’s unsustainable and growing debt,” Corker said. “Even if the cost is fully offset with current revenue, the payroll tax holiday is poor public policy because it undermines funding for Social Security to give out a temporary stimulus that will do little to help the economy and make it harder to get spending under control. What we need are policies that will provide real clarity and predictability for businesses to create jobs like eliminating tax loopholes, lowering rates, and broadening the base; reforming Social Security and Medicare so they are sustainable for the future; and finally putting in place a long-term plan for deficit reduction.”