Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) strongly condemned plans by Congressional Democrats to increase tobacco taxes by $96 billion as devastating to Michigan, ahead of a visit by President Joe Biden to Howell tomorrow.  

ATR’s Director of Consumer Issues, Tim Andrews, stated “Any plans to double the federal tobacco tax and impose new taxes reduced risk tobacco alternatives are a blatant violation of President Biden’s pledge not to raise taxes on anyone earning under $400,000. This tax hike will harm the poorest Americans and entrench income inequalities even further. 72% of smokers are low-income earners. It is unconscionable to increase taxes on the poor – who are still struggling with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic – to pay for more subsidies for the rich. 
Andrews also noted the negative effects that this tax hike would have on the Michigan economy and on the State’s budget: “These new taxes will lead to disastrous economic consequences for retailers and family-owned convenience stores as more and more smokers will move to the black market. In addition to eliminating an estimated 400 jobs, estimates project that the tax hike will reduce wages by $19.6 million and significantly reduce state government revenue.  

Andrews concluded that “Democrats in other states like Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear have already condemned this proposal as bad for families and bad for their states. When President Biden visits Howell tomorrow, voters must hold him to his pledge and let him know that The Wolverine State just can’t afford more new taxes.”