House Speaker Paul Ryan and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady visited the Dallas headquarters of Southwest Airlines this week to promote the tax reform law -- which has slashed the overwhelming majority of Americans' tax burdens and directly benefited millions of American workers. Earlier this year, the airline announced $1,000 bonuses for all of its employees, in addition to a seven-figure charitable investment, attributing both developments to the GOP-passed law:
I’m proud to report we are rewarding our Employees with a $1,000 bonus with the anticipated savings from the tax reform legislation, we are contributing an additional $5 million in charitable donations, and we are making investments in our fleet and our business. pic.twitter.com/h4GVqRrXzX— Gary Kelly (@gary_kelly) January 2, 2018
Many on the Left have sought to downplay the positive impact of tax reform, which has indisputably helped individuals, families and businesses, while fueling a surging US economy. They've dismissed four-figure bonuses and tax breaks as "crumbs" and gleefully cited polls showing that many Americans haven't noticed the impact of their tax cuts. Setting aside the fact that the law's popularity has soared as newly-implemented realities have systematically debunked Democrats' dishonest attacks, and that President's approval rating on the issue has spiked considerably post-passage, it is important for Republicans to keep beating the drum on the issue. GOP lawmakers and their allies need to continue drawing attention to the new law's tangible successes, including by urging taxpayers to check their pay stubs. During Monday's visit, a parade of Southwest employees stood up to thank Ryan and his colleagues (none of whom were Democrats) for passing tax reform. One by one, they shared their personal stories of how they used their bonuses; it turns out that "crumbs" can do a lot of good in a lot of regular people's lives. Ryan's press secretary tweeted some of the examples:
Wow, @SouthwestAir employees now sharing what they did with their #taxreform bonuses:— AshLee Strong (@AshLeeStrong) April 2, 2018
Woman paid off condo
Woman bought new washer/dryer
Man put toward daughters’ college ed
Woman put toward flight training
And my favorite: Man put toward a ministry in Kenya to feed people.
Here's video of the event, with the words of appreciation starting around the 13-minute mark. The final example Strong flags, featuring a man who works in the company's supply chain and repairs division, begins just before the (16:00) mark. He read a moving statement he prepared with his wife:
"A couple years ago, my wife and I started a ministry of helping feed and clothe a needy family in rural Kenya. Also, to help them be self-sufficient -- and this grew into feeding and helping the whole village. In the last year, we opened a primary school and a community outreach center within that same village. Within a few months, the student enrollment exploded to close to 100 children and staff, and we have that many more on a waiting list. We realized that we could not support this increasing growth on our own, but we also could not live with ourselves if we turned these children away because we knew that meant most of these children would go without eating. So we made a decision to take on the extra children, not knowing where the money would come from, and believing our faith that God would provide. Two days later, we found out we were getting a bonus. And it was exactly the amount needed to feed these people for the next two months.
So I stand here, Mr. Speaker, so appreciative for the decisions that you and your colleagues in Washington have made to give businesses tax breaks. The result of this is Southwest Airlines...sharing [the tax cut] with their employees. This decision did not just impact one employee or their family, but many children that are being clothed, fed and are attending school. You have given hope and love to the whole village in rural Kenya. And I can confidently say, I know God is here today looking at all of us involved, saying, 'job well done.'"
Automakers' March US sales rise, lifted by strong economy https://t.co/5eLUq8d2JW— CNBC (@CNBC) April 3, 2018