This report was written by David Sirota and Andrew Perez
Republican Sen. Ron Johnson on Friday moved to block emergency survival checks to millions of Americans, citing concerns about the federal deficit. Johnson’s move not only follows his vote for a massive $500 billion corporate slush fund — it also follows his successful effort to enrich himself with a giant tax cut that expanded the deficit.
Johnson, who is worth an estimated $39 million, led the fight in 2017 to create special tax breaks for so-called “pass-through” businesses, or real estate shell companies. Johnson was one of several Republican senators who backed the last-minute provisions inserted in the bill — and who listed income from those pass-through entities on their federal financial disclosure forms.
Based on those federal filings, Johnson stood to personally reap up to $205,000 from the tax cut provisions he championed.
Financial disclosure records reviewed by The Daily Poster show Johnson and his wife own a limited liability corporation, which is the kind of pass through entities that were targeted for tax cuts by Johnson’s 2017 legislation. Their LLC owns an industrial building in Oshkosh, Wisc., that is worth between $5 million and $25 million and generated as much as $1 million in income last year.
In all, the tax legislation Johnson backed is projected to increase the deficit by $1.9 trillion over 10 years, according to estimates from the Congressional Budget Office.
On Friday, Johnson moved to block a bipartisan proposal, from Vermont Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., to give Americans emergency $1,200 checks, amid a sudden increase in poverty and mass starvation across the country.
Johnson argued that the direct payment proposal would be “mortgaging our children's future” — an argument that he did not make when he led the fight to personally enrich himself with a massive tax cut only three years ago.
Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore/Wikipedia
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