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Senate Democrats unveil 15% corporate minimum tax proposal

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Senate Democrats unveil 15% corporate minimum tax proposal
A group of Senate Democrats including Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., unveiled a proposal to impose a 15% tax on companies that publicly report more than $1 billion in profits annually for a three-year time period. File Pool photo by Mandel Ngan/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 26 (UPI) -- A group of senators on Tuesday released new details of a plan to impose a 15% minimum corporate tax that is expected to affect about 200 companies.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Angus King, I-Maine, and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., announced the plan which could form a source of revenue to fund President Joe Biden's Build Back Better social spending package.

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The corporate minimum tax will apply to companies that publicly report more than $1 billion in profits annually for a three-year time period, creating a 15% minimum tax on the profits those companies report to their shareholders.

It would also preserve the value of business credits -- including research and development, clean energy, and housing tax credits -- and include flexibilities for companies to carry forward losses, utilize foreign tax credits and claim a minimum tax credit against regular tax in future years.

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The senators also projected it will raise "hundreds of billions" in revenue over 10 years.

"Giant corporations have been exploiting tax loopholes for too long, and it's about time they pay their fair share to help run this country, just like everyone else," Warren said. "The Corporate Profits Minimum Tax would end corporate double dealing and ensure companies pay something in taxes when they report billions in profits to their shareholders."

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The senators specifically cited Amazon, stating the online retailing giant reported $45 billion in profits throughout the past three years yet paid an effective tax rate of 4.3%, well below the 21% corporate tax rate, while also not paying any federal income tax in 2018.

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"The most profitable corporations in the country are often the worst offenders when it comes to paying their fair share. Year after year they report record profits to shareholders and pay little to no taxes," said Wyden, the chair of the Senate finance committee. "Our proposal would tackle the most egregious corporate tax dodging by ensuring the biggest companies pay a minimum tax."

The proposal has also been co-sponsored by Sens. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., Edward Markey, D-Mass., and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.

On Tuesday evening, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., who has opposed the spending bill expressed support for the corporate tax in a statement shared to Twitter.

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"This proposal represents a commonsense step toward ensuring that highly profitable corporations -- which sometimes can avoid the current corporate tax rate -- pay a reasonable minimum corporate tax on their profits, just as everyday Arizonans and Arizona small businesses do."

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