That all added up to a massive PR campaign on behalf of the cuts that elided all of the bill’s negative consequences, like the decision by Kleenex maker Kimberly-Clark to use its tax windfall to fund a plan that included laying off 5,000 workers. And it’s not clear that the cut directly led to the bonuses or if the companies just credited Trump in order to garner goodwill from the administration. In AT&T’s case, the telecom giant said it had given out $1,000 bonuses because of the tax cuts when actually it was pushed into handing out money by a union representing its workers.
“I’d love to see how much companies paid out last year compared to this year,” said Richard Phillips, senior policy analyst at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy. “Or that would have been part of Christmas bonuses that would’ve been paid either way.” Read more