John McCain on Corporations

Republican nominee for President; Senior Senator (AZ)

Cut taxes for small business so they can thrive

McCAIN: Sen. Obama was in Ohio and he had an encounter with a plumber, his name is Joe. Joe wants to buy the business, but he looked at your tax plan and saw he was going to pay higher taxes, which was going to cause him not to be able to employ people. Joe, I’ll not only help you buy that business you worked your whole life for, I’ll keep your taxes low. I will not stand for a tax increase on small business. And what you want to do to Joe and millions like him is have their taxes increased and not be able to realize the American dream of owning their own business.

OBAMA: What I’ve said is I want to provide a tax cut for 95% of working Americans. If you make less than a quarter million dollars a year, then you will not see your income tax go up, your capital gains tax go up, your payroll tax. Not one dime. In fact, independent studies have looked at our respective plans and have concluded that I provide three times the amount of tax relief to middle-class families than Sen. McCain does.

Source: 2008 third presidential debate against Barack Obama Oct 15, 2008

Warned about corporate greed & excess; supports bailout

Q: Are you going to vote for the Senate bailout plan?

A: Sure. Sure, but let me point out I also warned about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and warned about corporate greed and excess and CEO pay and all that. A lot of us saw this train wreck coming. But there’s also the issue of responsibility. Pres. Eisenhower, on the night before the Normandy invasion, went into his room, and wrote out two letters. One of them was a letter congratulating the great members of the military and Allies that had conducted and succeeded in the greatest invasion in history--still, to this day, and forever. And he wrote out another letter, and that was a letter of resignation from the US Army for the failure of the landings at Normandy. Somehow we’ve lost that accountability I’ve been heavily criticized because I called for the resignation of the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. We’ve got to start also holding people accountable, and we’ve got to reward people who succeed.

Source: 2008 first presidential debate, Obama vs. McCain Sep 26, 2008

Need stricter interpretation and consolidation of regulators

OBAMA: Ten days ago McCain said the fundamentals of the economy are sound. Unless we are holding ourselves accountable day-in, day-out, not just when there’s a crisis for folks who have power and influence and can hire lobbyists but for the nurse, the teacher, the police officer who frankly at the end of each month, they’ve got a little financial crisis going on. They’re having to take out extra debt just to make their mortgage payments. We haven’t been paying attention to them.

McCAIN: We’ve got fundamental problems in the system. And Main Street is paying a penalty for the excesses and greed in Washington, DC, and in the Wall Street. There’s no doubt that we have a long way to go, and obviously stricter interpretation and consolidation of the various regulatory agencies that weren’t doing their job that has brought on this crisis. But I have a fundamental belief in the goodness and strength of the American worker. And the American worker is the most productive, the most innovative.

Source: 2008 first presidential debate, Obama vs. McCain Sep 26, 2008

Government should be on businesses’ side, not in their way

The first consideration we should have when debating tax policy is how we can help [small businesses] grow and increase the prosperity of the millions of American families whose economic security depends on their success. Government should be on their side, not in their way.

Our current business tax rate, the second highest in the world, will postpone our recovery from this downturn and make us increasingly less competitive in the world economy. When a corporation plans to expand and hire more workers, they face a choice between building a new plant here at home and building it in a country like Ireland where they will pay less than half the tax rate they now pay. Employers can hire more people, or they can pay more taxes. We can no longer afford the luxury of nostalgia for past times when American business faced little serious competition in the world.

Source: Obama & McCain back-to-back speeches at NALEO Jun 28, 2008

More deductible expensing of equipment investments

Source: Campaign plan: “Bold Solutions for Economic Prosperity” Feb 3, 2008

Cut corporate income taxes to keep jobs here

Q: The president’s economic stimulus plan would send out 116 million checks to American homes, but without permanent tax cuts that you sought. Will you vote for this compromise?

A: Yes, I will and I’m disappointed, because I think it’s very important that we make the Bush tax cuts permanent. I voted to make them permanent twice already. If people and businesses and families in America are now planning their 2010 budget, there’s a great deal of uncertainty. And if we don’t make the tax cuts permanent, then they will experience what amounts to a tax increase. But I also would make sure that not only the tax cuts are made permanent, but we cut corporate income taxes. That would keep businesses here, and it would keep jobs here and create jobs here. We pay the highest corporate income tax of any nation in the world except for Japan. I’m glad to see that we’re going to allow people to expense new investments in equipment, so they can write them off in a very short period of time.

Source: 2008 GOP debate in Boca Raton Florida Jan 24, 2008

People worry about corporations unduly influencing elections

Most Americans understand that competitive elections in a free country require money. Since campaigns require spending funds to communicate with voters, they know we can never take money completely out of politics, nor should we. Americans have a right to support the candidates and the parties they endorse, including financially if they so choose.

But what most Americans worry about profoundly is corporations or individuals with huge checks seeking the undue influence on lawmakers that such largesse is intended to purchase. That is why John McCain has fought to enforce long-standing prohibitions on corporate and union contributions to federal political parties, for sensible donation limits, disclosure of how candidates and campaigns are funded, and the diligent enforcement of these common sense rules that promote maximum public participation in the political process and limit opportunities for corruption.

Source: Campaign website, www.johnmccain.com, “Issues” Sep 1, 2007

Skilled chair of Senate Commerce Committee since 1997

After the 1996 election, McCain moved up from the #2 position on the Commerce Committee to assume the chairmanship. Both lobbyists & industry representatives had long eyed McCain as a rather controversial member of the Commerce Committee, if only because his commitment to free markets and deregulation ran deeper than the normal cozy relations with industry or sectors of industry.

As chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, McCain became the senator charged with the issue of forging consensus on tobacco legislation--an unlikely issue in that McCain was himself an avid smoker in the Hanoi Hilton. The bill, christened the McCain bill, passed through the Commerce Committee by a vote of 19-1. Members of both parties, with an eye to events beyond the 1998 mid-term elections, suggested that McCain's skill in shepherding such a contentious issue through committee demonstrated presidential caliber. (The sole dissenting negative vote belonged to the conservative Republican John Ashcroft of Missouri.)

Source: John McCain: An Essay, by John Karaagac, p.180-183 Sep 20, 2000

Voted NO on repealing tax subsidy for companies which move US jobs offshore.

Amendment to repeal the tax subsidy for certain domestic companies which move manufacturing operations and American jobs offshore.
Reference: Tax Subsidy for Domestic Companies Amendment; Bill S AMDT 210 to S Con Res 18 ; vote number 2005-63 on Mar 17, 2005

Voted YES on reforming bankruptcy to include means-testing & restrictions.

Amends Federal bankruptcy law to revamp guidelines governing dismissal or conversion of a Chapter 7 liquidation (complete relief in bankruptcy) to one under either Chapter 11 (Reorganization) or Chapter 13 (Adjustment of Debts of an Individual with Regular Income). Voting YES would:
Reference: Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005; Bill S 256 ; vote number 2005-44 on Mar 10, 2005

Voted YES on restricting rules on personal bankruptcy.

Vote to pass a bill that would require debtors able to repay $10,000 or 25 percent of their debts over five years to file under Chapter 13 bankruptcy (reorganization and repayment) rather than Chapter 7 (full discharge of debt).
Reference: Bill HR 333 ; vote number 2001-236 on Jul 17, 2001

Rated 61% by the US COC, indicating a mixed business voting record.

McCain scores 61% by US Chamber of Commerce on business policy

Whether you own a business, represent one, lead a corporate office, or manage an association, the Chamber of Commerce of the United States of AmericaSM provides you with a voice of experience and influence in Washington, D.C., and around the globe.

Our members include businesses of all sizes and sectors—from large Fortune 500 companies to home-based, one-person operations. In fact, 96% of our membership encompasses businesses with fewer than 100 employees.

Mission Statement:

"To advance human progress through an economic, political and social system based on individual freedom, incentive, initiative, opportunity, and responsibility."
The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
Source: COC website 03n-COC on Dec 31, 2003

Other candidates on Corporations: John McCain on other issues:
GOP: Sen.John McCain
GOP V.P.: Gov.Sarah Palin
Democrat: Sen.Barack Obama
Dem.V.P.: Sen.Joe Biden

Third Parties:
Constitution: Chuck Baldwin
Libertarian: Rep.Bob Barr
Constitution: Amb.Alan Keyes
Liberation: Gloria La Riva
Green: Rep.Cynthia McKinney
Socialist: Brian Moore
Independent: Ralph Nader
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Page last updated: Feb 08, 2010