In an attempt to make the Democrats in the room look tax crazy, a Missouri Republican Representative in Congress made himself famous. Not really in the way anyone wants to be famous, more like the way that so many of us earn really bad nicknames — by saying or doing something particularly stupid or incomprehensible in public. He literally asked why we just don’t propose a tax on Ice Cream and the sun.
Watch this portion here:
There is a lot of taxes out there but you could tax a lot of items if you want to stop behavior. I love ice cream. Ice cream is probably not the most healthy thing to eat. Why is there not a tax on that? You know what? If you look at the number one cause of skin cancer it is not tanning beds. Do a google search. It is the sun. I notice the people over here haven’t found too many taxes that they dislike so why have they not proposed a tax on the sun instead of tanning beds? With that, Mr. Speaker, I leave those thoughts and yield the balance of my time.
This comment came after Jason Smith tried to equate women paying 80 percent of tanning bed taxes with some sort of discrimination:
I am not done yet, sir. So, I wasn’t here. One of the newer members. But when you just look at the facts roughly 80 percent of the individuals who are burdened with this tax are are females. It looks like an interesting target which I think is inappropriate.
He obviously doesn’t realize that women make 85 percent of the purchases in this country according to Bloomberg — which means that they are the ones paying the taxes on those purchase. Nor that more women, especially white, younger women, use tanning beds than men do according to the CDC — hence paying more of that tax. No big conspiracy here, just a logical extension of the purchasing power women actually have in this country. To suggest that women are being targeted here (as if they were being charged a higher tax than men) is ridiculous.
Before the right starts crying about deceptive editing or out of context, the comment followed a discussion about a tax on tanning beds due to the scientific link to causing cancer. That said, it is asinine and impossible to suggest a tax on the sun, but that didn’t stop this… Representative, from trying to shame democrats for using our tax system to offset the medical costs associated with certain products. You know, like taxing cigarettes for the cost of the cancers that follow them?
Equating ice cream (safe enough in moderation) with a device that is known to cause cancer with normal use is clearly a gap in logic, but to do so when arguing a health care bill and somehow rolling it into a skewed Republican view of what constitutes targeting people with a punitive tax? Well, that is a stupid as waxing philosophical about how you like ice cream and the sun causes cancer, so why don’t the Democrats tax the sun?
Perhaps, the Congressman should do another Google search or two before he speaks in public again?
Watch the full clip, courtesy of C-span below;