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May 09, 2024

Schweikert: We’re Living Through the Largest Tax Hike in Modern History

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative David Schweikert (AZ-01) delivered a speech on the House Floor this week to discuss how increases in health care spending are causing U.S. debt and deficits to explode to unsustainable levels. Rep. Schweikert also explained that skyrocketing inflation has forced hardworking Americans to live through the largest tax hike in modern history.

Excerpts from Rep. Schweikert’s floor speech can be found below:


Click here or on the image above to view Rep. Schweikert’s remarks.

On health care spending driving up federal debt and deficits:

[Beginning at 19:23]
“What crushes the future? Federal debt and deficits. It’s the Medicare portion. That same average couple in that lifetime will pay in $214,000 into the Medicare Part A Trust Fund. And remember, I already showed you the majority of Medicare doesn’t actually come from the trust fund. It covers about 35% of spending. The rest comes in from your premiums, from the general fund, from some state transfers, and other things. So that average couple is going to pay $214,000 in taxes into Medicare. They’re going to get $635,000 in benefits. That difference there is the number one driver of U.S. debt. The political class — it is so dangerous to tell you the truth because it makes our core voters cranky. It’s not your fault. We as a society, we made a deal with all of us. These are earned benefits. We made a deal. You worked your 40 quarters for Social Security, you worked your time, you paid your taxes. You got 65. That was the societal deal. But what this place did not do is think about the cost of health care. We were so terrified to force, to incentivize, to require, to encourage, to prod innovation, disruptions and costs. So we committed a fraud here, and this fraud has gone on for decades.”

On living through the largest tax hike in modern history:

[Beginning at 29:04]
“What’s the biggest tax hike in modern history? You’re living it! Understand you are living it the last three years of the Biden administration — the higher inflation. In my district, unless you right now make about 24% more today than you did the day the president took office. You’ve got to understand during that time, if you’re not making about 24% [more], you are poorer if you live in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area. If you’re not making 24% [more], you have the right to be cranky because that was a transfer of your wealth to the U.S. debt because we lowered the value of your purchasing power, but we now pay it back. We pay back the U.S. debt because the United States is the largest debtor in the world. We now pay it back with inflated dollars. It’s a tax, whether you understand it or not, inflation is a tax. Welcome to the biggest tax in modern history, and you just lived it. And have you ever wondered why so many of our brothers and sisters on the Left despise it when we talk about inflation? Because it worked for them. It turns out when you have that inflation, the size of the debt as a percentage of GDP sort of flatlines a bit until the new higher interest rates come slamming into you, and that’s what we’re at now.”

On The White Swan:

[Beginning at 38:26]
“There’s this term called a black swan. That’s when something sneaks up on you, blows you up, and you weren’t expecting it. This is called a white swan. You know it’s coming for you, and you choose to do nothing about it. I know I come behind this microphone every week and I’m almost mentally exhausted because is anyone listening? There are solutions. Our problem is the clock is ticking. The on-ramp to bring those solutions to market to actually have an effect on our debt and borrowing and economic growth, I think we only have three, four, five more years. But you’ve got to deal with the real numbers. When this place borrows $8.5 billion a day, and we will lose our minds over things that mathematically are rounding errors. When we’ve done things in this Body that have made the bond markets nervous, when a single basis point — so 1% of interest has 100 basis points — a single basis point just this year will cost us about $800 million. And I’ve watched us have debates where we say absolutely insane things, and you can almost watch parts of the market saying, ‘Nope, I think U.S. debt just got riskier because these people aren’t serious about economic growth and stability.’”

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