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Cross posted from CWA's Resistance Growing blog:

During last night’s presidential debate, President Obama said he’s working to kill the tax breaks that are encouraging corporations to move good American jobs abroad. Mitt Romney retorted that the president was talking nonsense. Who is right? Let’s go to the tape:

OBAMA: ...  I also want to close those loopholes that are giving incentives for companies that are shipping jobs overseas. I want to provide tax breaks for companies that are investing here in the United States

ROMNEY: … you said you get a deduction for taking a plant overseas. Look, I've been in business for 25 years. I have no idea what you're talking about. I maybe need to get a new accountant. But -- but the idea that you get a break for shipping jobs overseas is simply not the case.

Obama wins this round.

Romney’s recently released tax returns made it clear that he and his accountant are quite familiar with navigating the tax code. Romney should know that the law currently allows a company that closes its American plant and moves manufacturing operations overseas to deduct that moving expense.

The New York Times says, “It is true.”  Reuters writes that there really are “deductions allowed for a company if it closes its plant in the United States and moves it to another country.” The conservative Boston Herald declared it a “huge gaffe.” Even Fox News’s fact check admits, “Technically, companies can claim a deduction for the costs associated with moving jobs overseas.”

In fact, Senate Republicans recently blocked a Democratic bill that would have provided a tax credit to companies that move jobs back to the United States and ended a tax break for companies moving operations overseas.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It's an Effing Lie; He Was in the Business of Movi (11+ / 0-)

    jobs offshore, he would have been telling companies about the break and how to use it.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 12:35:55 PM PDT

  •  Sounds like an instant ad - but then, there were s (7+ / 0-)

    so many last night it's hard to know where to begin.

    Personally, I like this one because it hits him on jobs, on vulture capitalism, and on being a lying liar.

    Fear is the mind-killer - Frank Herbert, Dune

    by p gorden lippy on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 12:38:33 PM PDT

  •  I guess Mitt gets to fire his accountant (5+ / 0-)

    he and Big Bird can commiserate in the unemployment lines.

  •  My favorite line for the Fox article (5+ / 0-)
    What Democrats want to do is end the deduction for firms moving overseas, in order to create a disincentive to offshore.
    That seems pretty awful, doesn't it?  

    Incarceration Nation has a Jail Jones to feed its Imprisonment Addiction

    by otto on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 12:41:51 PM PDT

  •  You get a deduction for ordinary expenses. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MGross, Sky Net

    Operating a plant, changing plant locations, these are ordinary expenses.  So it's a little like saying "businesses get deductions for using yellow legal pads."  I mean, it's true, but inasmuch as it implies that there's some special tax break for yellow legal pads that wouldn't be available but for some specific yellow-legal-pad section of the code, it's pretty misleading.

  •  Tax Breaks for Small Businesses (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NormAl1792, phonegery

    If I recall, employee payroll and expenditures for employee benefits are legitimate deductions from gross receipts when figuring taxes.   Business taxes are on NET income, not GROSS.  The argument that higher taxes on small businesses leads to fewer jobs is sheer BS.  Businesses hire more people when they cannot get all the work done with the few, low-paid workers they already have.  Higher demand for product and services leads to more hiring.

  •  No, not really. (4+ / 0-)

    You  can deduct expenses incidental to moving operations offshore, but only because these expenses are deductible under any circumstances.

    There are no "loopholes that are giving incentives for companies that are shipping jobs overseas."

    The only "incentive" present is a general one for moving your business, in that you can deduct moving expenses no matter where you're moving to.

  •  Hope this one makes the rec list. Nice work. (0+ / 0-)

    Maybe some of the Debby Downers on MSNBC will give this subject some attention in the very near future.

    Ds see human suffering and wonder what they can do to relieve it. Rs see human suffering and wonder how they can profit from it.

    by JTinDC on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 01:12:24 PM PDT

    •  I Doubt It, And The Reason (0+ / 0-)

      I don't think they will is because as has been written here already, there are no special incentives for 'shipping jobs overseas', there are only tax incentives for moving plant and equipment, but you get that break anyway.

      As I recall there was some incentive to offshore jobs built into the tax code but it was eliminated during the Bush administration.

      Beyond that, this is just another case of the pot calling the kettle black.

      Barack Obama just signed three new so-called 'free trade' agreements which will undoubtedly provide incentives to move more jobs offshore to now Colombia and Panama, and Diana Farrell who until very recently was Barack Obama's Deputy Director of the U.S. National Economic Council literally wrote the book on offshoring while at McKinsey.

      Additionally, Gene Sperling is still a Director of the U.S. National Economic Council, and Sperling was one of primary power brokers in the Clinton administration with respect to the H1B guest worker visa program. You can't offshore a job without the domain knowledge, the H1B guest worker visa program is how you aquire this domain knowledge.

      I won't be coming home tonight, my generation will put it right - Genesis 9:3

      by superscalar on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 03:02:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  If this is the case then why didn't the (0+ / 0-)

        "fact checkers" referred to in this diary rip it apart as "mostly false"?

        Ds see human suffering and wonder what they can do to relieve it. Rs see human suffering and wonder how they can profit from it.

        by JTinDC on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 03:38:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Look At What The New York Times Says (0+ / 0-)
          Annie Lowrey: It is true. The tax code currently does allow companies to deduct certain expenses when they move operations overseas
          And this is true. Mitt Romney could have also claimed that there was an incentive in the tax code to move jobs from China  to the U.S., because this is also technically true under the tax code.

          If I move a plant and equipment, I get a tax break, it doesn't matter where I move that plant and equipment to.

          In the end  all just weasel word bullshit.

          I won't be coming home tonight, my generation will put it right - Genesis 9:3

          by superscalar on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 03:52:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  One More Thing Here (0+ / 0-)

            When did Barack Obama and the Democratic Party suddently become so concerned with the offshoring of jobs?

            Bill Clinton signed NAFTA
            Bill Clinton signed MFN with China
            Six Democratic Senators made sure CAFTA was passed

            Barack Obama signed so-called 'free trade' agreements with Panama, Colombia, and South Korea
            Barack Obama is currently going balls out on the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

            By my calculations it wasn't more than a year ago that virtually  nobody in the Democratic Party gave a shit about offshoring. Markos Moulitsas Zúniga is a 'free trader' (which is why you don't see diaries from him about offshoring).

            Go back on Daily Kos more than two years and look at basically all of the diaries about offshoring and so-called 'free trade'. For the most part the response was "I'm a citizen of the world and the Chinese deserve jobs too".

            Obama, Axelrod, Plouffe, and for the most part the majority of the Daily Kos community didn't give a shit about offshoring until the calculus told them they could drum up some votes from coming out against it.

            One more point. From where I sit there it doesn't matter whether you export a job to cheaper labor, or you import cheaper labor to a job.

            You've heard Barack Obama and the Democratic Party wail and knash their teeth about the one lately, you don't hear shit from them about the other. The Democratic Party is plenty happy to import cheaper labor to jobs all day long.

            I won't be coming home tonight, my generation will put it right - Genesis 9:3

            by superscalar on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 04:06:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Only in America, (0+ / 0-)

    I slimy politician and plutocrat can lie like the rogue that he is and be declared a winner of the debate. What does that tell us about our values?

  •  Obama referring to Tax Deferral, not ship costs (0+ / 0-)

    Here's an article about it:

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