Rand Paul: Give Caterpillar an award for avoiding taxes

Sen. Rand Paul comes to the defense of CAT. (Image Credit: MGN Online)

Sen. Rand Paul comes to the defense of CAT. (Image Credit: MGN Online)

Some Republican senators, including a presidential hopeful, are defending strategies used by Caterpillar Inc. to save the manufacturing giant billions in U.S. taxes.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky) is one of those supporting Caterpillar, noting that the company should get an “award” instead of an inquisition.

As the Associated Press reports via CBSNews.com, “Caterpillar has avoided paying $2.4 billion in U.S. taxes since 2000 by shifting profits to a wholly-controlled affiliate in Switzerland, according to a report released by Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich.”

Levin, who chairs the Senate investigations subcommittee, grilled Caterpillar executives and their accountants Tuesday at a hearing on the company’s tax strategy.

“Caterpillar is an American success story that produces iconic industrial machines,” Levin said, according to the AP, “But it is also a member of the corporate profit-shifting club that has transferred billions of dollars offshore to avoid paying U.S. taxes.”

Julie Lagacy, a Caterpillar vice president, said the manufacturer follows all tax laws and pays “everything” it owes.

Paul questioned the actions of the subcommittee in holding the hearing Tuesday.

“I think rather than having an inquisition, we should probably bring Caterpillar here and give them an award,” Paul reportedly said. He went on to praise the company’s ability to stay in business for more than a century, adding Caterpillar has an “obligation to shareholders” to minimize their taxes.

Click here to read the full story at CBSNews.com.

15 comments

  • Branko Pezdi

    Has Caterpillar done anything illegal? If not (and apparently it hasn’t) Carl Levin needs to go soak his head. Who does this two-bit apparatchik think he is, other than just another power greedy, slimy politician? Nice job you’re doing there in Michigan, Carl, with your fellow Democrat sleazeballs.

  • Wake Up

    Every dollar not paid in corporate taxes is made up with more taxes on individual citizens. Some people prefer to give corporations a free ride on our wagon while the workers pay and pull the wagon — Carl Levin is not one of those people while the corporate apologists like Rand Paul are!

    • screw aarp

      Prove your statement, We all know you cant, but try. WOW, we all know Caterpillar has union workers.

    • Branko Pezdi

      And who ends up paying corporate taxes ultimately? Are you really this clueless? (rhetorical question)

      • Wake Up

        If you want to see clueless you just need to look in a mirror. Corporate taxes are paid from corporate profits. Corporations will try to pass that cost onto the consumer, but they can not always do that. They can rase prices only if the market will support the increase. I may try to charge $1.00 more for the widget I make to cover my corporate taxes. If the customer refuses to pay a dollar more I will have to lower my price to make the sale. In those cases, the consumer is not paying for the corporate taxes. That, my friend, is the power of the market.

  • GiGi Green

    Reward them for tax evasion. So rand paul thinks criminal activity should be rewarded. What does that tell you about his integrity?

  • John

    Senator Paul also said we need to focus on revising US Corporate tax laws so companies like Catepillar won’t need to move money offshore…

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