A considerable number of conservatives have expressed criticism at Rick Santorum’s manufacturing plan. Incidentally, many of them have a horse in the race – someone other than Santorum - and that’s pretty understandable and perfectly fine. It’s still a free country where people may publicly disagree with the president and anyone else they so much as desire.
When taking someone’s plan to task, though, it would be most beneficial to be factual especially if attempting to promote a rival candidate. If one’s disagreement is full of falsehoods and non-factual information then not only won’t they be successful in convincing many that their argument is correct, they present themselves to the public as possibly uninformed and more likely to be purposely misleading.
For those unfamiliar with Santorum’s "Made in America" Plan it is one portion of his economic plan and is in itself a lengthy and detailed plan. The Plan includes but is not limited to pushing for a balanced budget amendment, removing unnecessary burdensome regulations, granting permission to increase of energy production, providing authorization for the Keystone Pipeline, simplifying the tax code, reducing taxes to the Reagan-era pro-growth top tax rate, and completely eliminating the corporate income tax for manufacturers from 35% to 0%. For the complete details please check out the link provided above.
It is the last item I’ve mentioned – the elimination of the corporate income tax for manufacturers - at which many have expressed their opposition and for a variety of reasons. I’ve decided to review the criticisms and then explain the facts surrounding this one aspect of Santorum’s economic plan, since lots of untruths are circulating.
A popular argument is the notion that Santorum is playing class warfare by favoring one group over the rest of the country. A second misconception which has circulated widely is that his plan favors big unions. A third criticism often put out is that the problem manufacturers face is not increased taxes but burdensome regulations and that Santorum’s plan doesn’t address it. A fourth claim is that this is a minor tinkering of the tax code which will result in nothing but increased taxes in another sector to make up for the loss in federal income.
All of these complaints appear quite serious, except that none of them are based on the facts.
Firstly, Santorum’s plan is unrelated to class warfare. Class warfare is pitting the poor against the rich, employees against employers, and so forth. Class warfare is usually achieved through placing a strong emphasis on the bounty others have and comparing it to the state of those who have less in order to create strong emotions of envy and unfairness in those with less. The politician then promises to punish those better off – such as taxing the rich guys – while extending help to the little guy via handouts aka tax-cuts/tax credits by spending other people’s money in order to “make things fair.”
Secondly, Santorum’s plan doesn’t turn employees against employers or anything of a similar nature. It simply eliminates the corporate income tax for manufacturers of all sizes and stripes as an incentive for manufacturing companies which have left the USA and gone to countries with fewer burdensome regulations and lower taxes to return to American shores. His plan will once again make the USA a country where it is financially worthwhile to manufacture goods rather than making them elsewhere and then having the goods shipped over. The elimination of the corporate income tax for manufacturers thus benefits the owners of manufacturing companies in order to benefit the overall economy of the US. The economy will receive a much-needed boost since the creation of many businesses will lead to the employment of millions who’ve previously watched their jobs be shipped overseas.
Santorum has put forward an actual plan (and not a twitter hash-tag like Newt’s 2.50) for a sector of the economy that’s crumbling and shrinking at a time when million are unemployed and many have despaired of finding a job. Santorum has also clearly explained why manufacturing requires additional reductions over local retailers and other companies who will also watch their taxes being cut. This is because your local pharmacy isn’t disappearing to China and neither will your grocer. It is manufacturing and jobs that are disappearing from this country and in order to be competitive with the rest of the world one has to look at the global rate and adjust accordingly.
This is the exactly what Obama and the left so strongly oppose; the trickle-down theory which keeps government out of the lives of the people.
Those who describe Santorum’s plan as pro-Union have portrayed his plan as though he were out to specifically favor union workers/bosses over the rest. This is completely untrue and those using this argument are either uninformed or purposefully misleading. The only method for unions to benefit from Santorum's plan is if they are successful in signing up more workers into their membership. This may occur since Santorum’s plan will lead to a greatly increased number of American workers, yet is far from guaranteed to happen since Santorum has also promised as a president to push for “right-to-work” on a national level.
Even if unions do increase their membership levels, then that in its own right will be proof of the success of Santorum’s plan. It will provide clear data that removing government from the picture has led to business owners hiring many workers, thus creating a considerable number of new jobs and new union members. This may indirectly lead to benefit unions but so be it if that’s one of the results of an improved economy and millions of new jobs. Unlike Democrats who only seek to benefit specific voting blocs and political donors, Santorum is out to create equal opportunity for all Americans.
Manufacturing currently costs over twenty percent higher in the USA than in other countries excluding labor costs because of regulations and taxes. This has caused and continues to cause many manufacturers to flee the country. Those who attack Rick’s plan to eliminate the corporate income tax for manufacturers as a worthless solution while explaining that the key to increasing manufacturing is cutting regulation, have proven that they are unable to walk and talk simultaneously. The argument displays their ignorance and lack of research in a day and age when information is available at one’s fingertips. Or worse yet, some are attempting to purposely omit Santorum’s heavy focus on regulation, somehow thinking that if they ignore it then it doesn’t exist.
For the sake of those truly uninformed, here’s a link to a video in which Rick Santorum speaks to voters in which he labeled the removal of all unnecessary regulations as Step Number One and only then continued to Step Number Two which is the reduction of the manufacturing tax to zero.
Additionally, Santorum is the only GOP candidate to have opposed from the start the burdensome regulations the government enforced on the people based on the bogus global warming facts. His support for increased energy production through additional drilling, nuclear energy plants, and all other forms of safe energy had never wavered. Newt and Romney, though, supported government regulation - as recently and to the far extreme as having supported Obama’s Cap & Trade.
As for the last misinformed case against Santorum’s plan, his Made in America plan does indeed eliminate the corporate income tax for manufacturers. In today’s topsy-turvy world where Obama “cut taxes” for people who pay no taxes, cutting taxes is seen as the government sending (back) a check to people/companies and thus thought of as a federal expense. This is not the case here and whenever true tax cuts occur. Tax cuts aren’t refunds. They simply allow the company to keep more/all of the money which they’ve earned. As for the government making up the money they’ve received until now through the raising of taxes of other groups, Santorum’s plan includes tax cuts for ALL as can be viewed here. He thus won’t raise the taxes of another group because he’s cutting everyone’s taxes.
The question of how the government will manage with fewer taxes is null and for two reasons: Firstly, lower taxes leads to increased government revenue since it jumpstarts the economy. Even though manufacturers will pay zero % on corporate income tax, the tremendous growth of newly employed people who will pay the new lowered rate of taxes, will lead to considerable federal income.
Secondly, and equally importantly, a large focus of Santorum’s economic plan is to cut government spending with five trillion in the next five years thus reducing the amount the government will require to operate. Santorum plans to shrink continuously the size of government while working with all states to accept a Balanced Budget Amendment. Newt supporters who use this argument of “how will the government manage with reduced funding” when discussing Santorum’s plan is pretty ironic when considering their applause for Newt for similarly saying that he’ll cut taxes and reduce government expenses to match the money that comes in.
Santorum has had the guts in the past to create actual reform – he had written the successful welfare reform – and continues to present actual details in the actions he will take. He doesn’t just throw platitudes and empty promises, but addresses all the issues facing this nation including but not limited to the economy. Santorum focuses on the importance of energy Independence, the need to bring jobs back to America, and so much more including the freedom –grabbing Obamacare. The success of his campaign therefore isn’t hinged solely on the price of gasoline as Newt’s is, or the unemployment levels, as Romney’s is. He can successfully battle Obama on every topic since he’s the only one who provides the contrast to Obama we so desperately need.