U.S. President Joe Biden flagged Amazon.com Inc. for not paying federal taxes in his Pittsburgh speech, according to Reuters.
- Biden said Amazon is one of 91 Fortune 500 companies that use various loopholes to avoid paying federal income taxes, while middle class families pay over 20%. “I don’t want to punish them but that’s just wrong.”
- An Amazon spokesperson responded by pointing to a tweet on research and development tax credits by the company’s public policy and communications chief Jay Carney. Carney also served as White House press secretary under former President Barack Obama.
- “If the R&D Tax Credit is a ‘loophole,’ it’s certainly one Congress strongly intended. The R&D Tax credit has existed since 1981, was extended 15 times with bi-partisan support and was made permanent in 2015 in a law signed by President Obama,” Carney tweeted.
- Biden plans to increase the corporate tax rate to 28% from 21%, and change the tax code to plug leaks that allow companies to move profits overseas.
- The President in June 2019 named Amazon and said no company profiting billions should pay a lower tax rate than firefighters and teachers.