Eric Bolling: Fox News' In-House Corporate Lobbyist

››› ››› LESLIE ROSENBERG

Fox News' Eric Bolling has been promoting what he described as his own stimulus plan, a plan centered on tax breaks for multinational corporations on money currently parked offshore. Bolling's proposal is remarkably similar to a plan reportedly promoted by corporate lobbyists during a Washington, D.C. conference on June 15 - the day before Bolling discussed his plan on Fox News.

After Corporate Lobbyists Pitch "Repatriation Holiday" As "The Next Stimulus" ...

Wednesday: Corporate Lobbyists Promoted A Tax Holiday As "The Next Stimulus." The New York Times reported that corporate lobbyists in Washington, D.C., pitched a "repatriation holiday" as "the next stimulus" at a conference "last Wednesday." From the Times:

Under the proposal, known as a repatriation holiday, the federal income tax owed on such profits returned to the United States would fall to 5.25 percent for one year, from 35 percent. In the short term, the measure could generate tens of billions in tax revenues as companies transfer money that would otherwise remain abroad, and it could help ease the huge budget deficit.

Corporations and their lobbyists say the tax break could resuscitate the gasping recovery by inducing multinational corporations to inject $1 trillion or more into the economy, and they promoted the proposal as "the next stimulus" at a conference last Wednesday in Washington.

"For every billion dollars that we invest, that creates 15,000 to 20,000 jobs either directly or indirectly," Jim Rogers, the chief of Duke Energy, said at the conference. Duke has $1.3 billion in profits overseas. [The New York Times, 6/19/11]

HuffPo Column: Corporations Were "Swarming The Hill" Looking For "A Highly Discounted Tax Rate" To "Bring Back Money From Offshore Locations." In a column opposing a tax holiday, Executive Director of Tax Justice Network USA, Nicole Tichon, wrote, "Multinational corporations are again swarming the Hill, trying to give Democrats and Republicans a reason to give tax amnesty in the form of a highly discounted tax rate of just over 5 percent to bring money back from offshore locations. They allege that this special tax holiday would enable them to do good-sounding things like creating jobs and investing in the U.S." [The Huffington Post, 6/17/11]

MSN Money: "There Is A Growing Call From Corporations For A Tax Holiday On Money Parked Overseas." MSN Money reported:

With an unemployment rate still above 9%, there is a growing call from corporations for a tax holiday on money parked overseas.

Companies have as much as $1 trillion in profits stored abroad. They want to bring that money to the United States but don't want to pay taxes at current corporate rates, which max out at 35%. [MSN Money, 6/16/11]

... Fox's Eric Bolling Touts His Very Own, Remarkably Similar Stimulus

Thursday: Bolling Described His Stimulus Plan As A Tax Holiday For Money "Being Held In Overseas Bank Accounts By Companies Who've Made Money Overseas." On June 16 -- the day after corporate lobbyists reportedly pitched a tax holiday on offshore money -- Eric Bolling appeared on Fox News' Fox & Friends. Guest co-host Peter Johnson, Jr., said to Bolling: "You've been formulating your own plan, you've been looking at this hard, and you have a stimulus plan that you think could work. What is it?" Bolling responded:

BOLLING: I do, I do, Peter, I think this one works. And this is generated from long discussions back and forth with Juan Williams. He said, "Bolling, all you want to do is trash Obama's policies. What do you have?" I think this will work. I think this is a stimulus plan that could actually bring us out of a, a recession. Look at it, number one, there's anywhere between $2 and $3 trillion dollars that are being held in overseas bank accounts by companies who've made money overseas. If they bring it back to the U.S., they get charged 35 percent corporate tax rate, the highest in the free world, OK? What I suggest is, give it to them for free. Bring it back here, allow them to put $3 trillion back here, but not 35, but take 25 percent of it, and you have to use that for either hiring new hires or buying equipment. It would absolutely stimulate the economy and every one of them would do it because they're investing in their own business, and it would certainly help the economy.

JOHNSON: So you're saying they're not going to bring the money back anyway.

BOLLING: They won't.

JOHNSON: Give them amnesty, and then re-invest it.

BOLLING: Give them amnesty with a 25% hook. It's a stimulus plan with strings attached. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 6/16/11]

Bolling: "I Have A Stimulus Plan That I Think Will Help Bring Jobs To America." From Fox Business' Follow The Money:

BOLLING: The White House declared last summer the "summer of recovery." Now we're headed into another summer and unemployment is 9.1 percent. Businesses aren't hiring. I have a stimulus plan that I think will help bring jobs to America, help bring us out of recession. Take a look. Number one, allow businesses to repatriate -- bring back home -- the $3 trillion they hold in overseas bank accounts. And number two -- this is the important one -- in lieu of paying taxes on that that they would have paid 35 percent -- in lieu of that, they must use 25 percent of the money they bring back for hiring and buying new equipment. [Fox Business, Follow The Money, 6/17/11]

Bolling: "I've Pointed Out" A Stimulus Plan To Repatriate Corporate Profits "Tax-Free." From Eric Bolling's appearance on Fox's Bulls & Bears:

CAROLINE HELDMAN: It's interesting, because I know Eric Bolling has a great idea in terms of bringing the $3 trillion that's been stockpiled back to the United States, right? There are plans on the table to do this with big business and if the Obama Administration can incentivize, he gets more bang for the buck going after big business than small, but I think he needs to go after both.

BRENDA BUTTNER: Well right now, actually, Caroline, the latest survey shows that more small businesses think they're going to have to cut jobs than, than add them. Eric, what do you say?

BOLLING: Well, because, and I'll get to that plan in one second, because of things like Obamacare, they're not sure where their health care costs are going, but here's the problem: I don't think it's either one, I think it's manufacturing, the big businesses and small businesses. Manufacturing has crawled to a standstill in America. We had two numbers this week that showed that manufacturing is dropping, if not stopping completely. We need to get manufacturing back going, and one way, and I've pointed out, with Caroline on another show, bring back the $3 trillion that are being held by U.S. corporations and banks overseas, and bring it back tax-free, but require 25 percent of that money to be used for hiring and/or buying new equipment, boy that will spur hiring, it'll also spur investments in their own businesses and every company would do it. [Fox News, Fox Business Bulls & Bears, 6/18/11]

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