Because One Pittsburgh dedicates itself to ending the policies that allow corporations to pay their fair share, we felt inspired to travel to Detroit for a national protest against GE.
While many of the companies One Pittsburgh targets use loopholes to pay for taxes in Pennsylvania, GE affects the whole country as it pays a scant amount of federal taxes. In fact, from 2008-2010 GE paid NO federal taxes at all. Over the last decade GE only paid an effective federal tax rate of 2.3%
GE’s tax dodging prowess was enough to get it put on the Citizen’s for Tax Justice’s “Dirty Thirty” list, a report about thirty corporations that pay more in political lobbying than they do in their fair share of taxes. In 2008-2010 when it paid no federal taxes, it spent $84.35 million to lobbyists.
The lowered taxes were apparently not enough to create jobs, as it cut approximately 32,000 of them since 2004, and keeps 60% of it’s business outside of the United States.
The 99%’s anger over this behemoth’s practices finally boiled over on April 25th at its shareholder’s meeting. Protestors from around the country arrived to let GE know that it’s tax dodging is hurting the nation.
The day before the shareholder meeting, 99%’s from Wisconsin were able to grill CEO Jeff Immelt about GE’s business practices.
Inside the meeting around 100 protestors holding GE shares were able to disrupt the meeting, shifting the focus from business as usual to the tax dodging and huge CEO compensation that characterizes GE.
One Pittsburgh helped form a massive march around the Renaissance Center where the meeting was held.
The protest in all was able to draw both local and national coverage in the news.