“Today, Congress voted to approve a final tax plan that did not contain a tax on tuition waivers, which was included in the House’s first version of the bill. This policy, which was widely viewed as a direct attack on academic student-workers and would have doubled or tripled their tax bills, spurred around-the-clock activism from the UAW higher education locals across the country. Tens of thousands of graduate students and other academic workers participated in phone banks, rallies, petitions, wrote opinion pieces, and joined walk outs to protest the plan, which would have taxed them at rates higher than were proposed for millionaires.
Postdoctoral Researchers at all campuses of the University of California joined the efforts to stop the tax on tuition waivers and preserve the student loan interest deduction, which will enable thousands of current and future Postdocs who struggle to pay off student loans to stay in their career paths. However, the GOP tax plan is still horrible for education and innovation, and a catastrophe for equality. The tax plan strikes at the very core of higher education and the upward mobility it provides by adding even more barriers to affordability and accessibility.
With their hurried, non-transparent process and countless giveaways, Republicans have proudly passed a massive wealth transfer from workers to the very rich and corporations. Corporate tax cuts are permanent, while individual tax cuts are set to expire. They acknowledge their plan will add $1.5 trillion to the deficit, which we can expect them to pay for with devastating cuts to health care, education, research, infrastructure and more. Meanwhile, the repeal of the insurance mandate will wreak havoc on the insurance markets, making health care unaffordable for tens of thousands of Americans insured under the Affordable Care Act. And sadly, the list goes on.
Republicans have worked relentlessly to give huge tax breaks to the rich and corporations at the expense of working people. The elected officials who supported this GOP Tax Scam – particularly those in California like Rep. Mimi Walters – can count on having angry and organized constituents to answer to.”