Former Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, who led the department during former President Obama’s second term, said the GOP tax cuts will leave us “broke” and could lead to deep cuts in social programs like Medicare and Medicaid.
“I fear that the next shoe to drop is going to be an attack on the most vulnerable in our society,” Lew said in a Bloomberg interview. “How are we going to pay for the deficit caused by the tax cut? You’re going to see proposals to cut health insurance from poor people, to take basic food support away from poor people, to attack Medicare and Social Security.”
“One could not have made up a more cynical strategy,” he added.
Lew said that the U.S. and its growing economy is in need of more jobs training, education and infrastructure, not more debt.
“What we’ve seen is a tax cut that spends money we don’t have, to have very concentrated benefits for global corporations and the top 1 percent, and it’s leaving us broke so that we cannot deal with these fundamental problems,” he said.
The Hill added:
President Trump late last month signed into law a Republican tax bill that lowers rates for individuals and corporations. The Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimates that the measure will add about $1.5 trillion to the deficit over 10 years before accounting for economic growth and about $1.1 trillion to the deficit after growth is factored in.
But Republicans have largely brushed off concerns about the tax law’s impact on the debt, viewing JCT’s growth estimates as conservative. They’ve predicted that economic growth will ultimately result in the tax cuts paying for themselves.
GOP lawmakers are weighing a push for welfare changes next year in an effort to cut the debt. Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has been pushing for entitlement reform, while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) seems reluctant to focus on the topic unless legislation could get bipartisan support.