Congressman Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.) has announced that he will publish a blacklist of New Yorkers that he believes has betrayed the state by donating candidates that support the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act’s (TCJA) cap on state and local tax deductions. 

Suozzi’s list will contain the names of businesses and individuals that oppose repealing the TCJA’s $10,000 cap on state and local tax (SALT) deductions. Republican lawmakers largely support the cap, so Suozzi’s list would presumably include any New Yorker who has donated to almost any Republican candidate or member of Congress. 

Make no mistake about it – Suozzi’s list is nothing more than an attempt to name and shame New Yorkers that oppose a tax deduction that overwhelmingly benefits high-tax blue states and does little to nothing for middle class families across the country.

“No New Yorker should contribute to a politician who is undermining our state,” Suozzi said in a blatant attempt to intimidate New Yorkers who are not on board with his scheme. “They are funding our own demise.” 

This is yet another escalation of rhetoric against conservatives from the left. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo previously said that the cap amounted to an “economic civil war.”

In reality, blue state lawmakers like Suozzi and Cuomo who have consistently pushed for higher taxes on their constituents are the problem, not lawmakers who support a cap on SALT deductions. 

Before the TCJA, taxpayers could deduct an unlimited amount of state and local taxes from their federal tax returns. This created a two-tiered system that overwhelmingly benefited high-tax blue states. Most Americans claimed $0 in state and local taxes because they took the standard deduction. 

This system created a de facto subsidy for blue states, allowing state lawmakers to raise taxes on their constituents while relying on the unlimited SALT deduction to hide the true cost of the tax hikes. While liberals like Suozzi claim that the cap on SALT deduction amounts to “double taxation,” they ignore the fact that the fiscal strain on their constituents comes from unnecessarily high state and local taxes, not the SALT cap. 

An unlimited SALT cap would be a windfall for the high-tax blue states. A recent report from the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation shows that repealing the SALT cap entirely would cut $40 billion in taxes for millionaires. In total, 94 percent of the tax breaks generated from ending the cap would be enjoyed by taxpayers making more than $200,000 a year. 

The debate over the cap on SALT deductions isn’t even a left versus right issue. Former Obama Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Jason Furman called repealing the cap a “complete waste of money.” Left-wing groups like the Center for American Progress and the Tax Policy Center have also come out against repealing the cap on the grounds that it mainly benefits the wealthy. 

Suozzi is naming and shaming those that disagree with him in an attempt to hide the true cost of tax hikes in blue states like New York. This absurd attempt at electoral intimidation should not go unnoticed by Suozzi’s constituents or taxpayers across the nation.