Amazon Supports Higher Corporate Tax Rate, Bezos Says

For something most of us know little about, we all have feelings about paying taxes.

Mostly, we don't love paying them. But taxes are the reason we have things like roads and police and firefighters and national parks and armed forces and so, so much more. All the things taxes do for us can be difficult to see when the time comes to cut the government a check every spring, but they must be paid all the same.

How much each sector of society — the middle class, the wealthy, small business, corporations, and so on — ought to be paying is always subject to debate. Right now, the way government winds are blowing, it looks like corporate America should plan to fork over a whole lot more dough at tax time.

And surprisingly, one of the biggest corporations around seems to be okay with that.

In a somewhat surprising move, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced the company's support for a corporate tax hike.

At issue is an ambitious Biden administration proposal to spend up to $2 trillion on infrastructure, investing in things like water systems, bridges, roads, tunnels, airports, electric grids, broadband internet access, job training, and more, as CNBC reported.

To offset the costs, the infrastructure plan calls for a raise in the corporate tax rate from the current 21% to 28%.

While Amazon has been a political punching bag regarding the taxes it pays, Bezos said that the company is fine with paying more.

Unsplash | Bryan Angelo

In a statement, Bezos said that the company is "supportive of a rise in the corporate tax rate."

"We support the Biden Administration’s focus on making bold investments in American infrastructure," Bezos said. "Both Democrats and Republicans have supported infrastructure in the past, and it’s the right time to work together to make this happen. We recognize this investment will require concessions from all sides—both on the specifics of what’s included as well as how it gets paid for."

It's a bit of a surprise given how President Biden and his administration have treated Amazon in the past.

Then-former VP Biden hit out at Amazon in 2019 for using tax credits and deductions to lower its tax bill, CNN reported. Amazon replied by saying it pays "every penny we owe" and claimed it had paid $2.6 billion in taxes since 2016.

On the campaign trail, Biden also dug at Amazon, suggesting the company should "start paying their taxes," and again, the company reiterated that it follows all tax laws.

Whether Amazon's support will help Biden's infrastructure plan pass through Congress remains unclear.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has already signaled his opposition to the bill, citing the high cost and the corporate tax increase, CNBC reported.

Given that opposition, to pass the bill, Senate Democrats would have to win over 10 Republicans with compromises or use budget reconciliation to pass it with a simple majority, a measure that has been approved by the Senate Parliamentarian.

h/t: CNN, CNBC