Florida Congressman Francis Rooney (R) has one again come under fire for cosponsoring the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, a carbon tax bill that Rep. Ted Deutch (D) sponsored earlier this year.
Rep. Rooney is the sole House Republican cosponsor of the bill.
The influential American for Tax Reform (ATR) organization has just come out against Rooney’s support for Deutch’s carbon tax, saying that the bill would “trigger new or higher taxes on many Social Security recipients,” if it were to pass in the House.
“Because the carbon tax would significantly increase household costs — cooling and heating, transportation, groceries, etc. — the bill directs the federal government to send payments to households in an attempt to compensate for the increased cost burden,” stated ATR in a press release
The group says that these payments or “dividends,” as Rep. Rooney calls them, would be subject to federal income tax, and would “not only siphon money from households to be sent to Washington,” but “it will also impact Social Security benefits.”
ATR also mentions the group Climate Solutions Lobby, which is fully supporting the carbon tax legislation, and recently released a report of how Rooney’s bill will impact Social Security benefits.
The report reads:
“Over the income-related phase-in range for the taxation of social security benefits, each additional $1.00 of non-social security income causes an additional $0.50 or $0.85 of social security benefits to become taxable. In most situations, the ordinary income tax rate in the phase-in range is 10 percent; however, at some income levels, the rate is 12 percent. Thus, $1.00 of non-social security income — including income from the Dividend — will be taxed at effective marginal rates of 15 percent, 18 percent, or 22.2 percent.“
In addition, Climate Solution’s report outlines how the “dividends” offered in the bill will make social security benefits to become taxable.”
“Based on that income, the tax rate schedule shows that their marginal tax rate would be 10 percent. However, the addition of $1,584 of taxable Dividends from the Carbon Fee causes more of their social security benefits to become taxable, and their marginal tax rate due to the Dividends is 20.12 percent, so that after paying their income tax, the couple is left with only 79.88 percent of their gross Dividend.”
Climate Solutions Lobby is also behind the Climate Solutions Caucus in the House, a committee comprised of Republican and Democratic legislators who regularly meet to discuss issues related to climate change.
While Rooney co-chairs this caucus, other members of Florida’s Republican congressional caucus – Reps. Brian Mast, Matt Gaetz, and Bill Posey – are also members.