(NewsNation) — The Federal Reserve reports U.S. corporate profits have surged 25 percent, which is the biggest annual increase in close to 50 years. Some lawmakers are accusing companies of using the pandemic and supply chain issues as excuses to raise prices. Now, legislators may be taking steps to regulate potential corporate gouging.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is among those who say big corporations are using the pandemic and war in Ukraine to make money.
During a Senate Budget Committee Hearing, Sanders accused companies such as Tyson and Amazon, who he says prioritize corporate greed, for causing inflation.
“Corporations are making record breaking profits. And over 700 billionaires in America became nearly $2 trillion wealthier,” Sanders said.
Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse says competition usually drives the price of items down, but that isn’t happening in the gas or meat industries.
“There something unusual about those two markets that seemingly causes this market theory not to pertain in those markets,” Whitehouse said.
Sanders and Whitehouse believe these corporations should have to pay a windfall tax for their profiteering. But Republicans say Democrats are pointing the finger at the wrong culprit.
“Best calls for inflation lies in the policy choices of this administration,” South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said.
Graham says higher corporate taxes aren’t a solution.
“If we impose new taxes now on businesses who change their business model in light of COVID, we’re going to make a huge mistake,” Graham said.
Graham believes this issue should be decided by the voters in November.