Independent Women's Forum today led a coalition of 34 freedom movement organizations and activists united against a new payroll tax and new paid leave entitlement program. 

"Everyone wants new parents to be able to have the time off they need to care for a new baby," explained IWF President Carrie Lukas, "But the wrong way to approach this issue is to have government take over and decide what kind of benefits are right for every single working woman and man.  And that's exactly what a new paid leave entitlement program would do. Once government begins collecting a new payroll tax and promising a new stream of benefit payments for every qualified worker, then all existing compensation packages are affected. It won't matter if you've liked what your employer is providing or not.  You'd be a part of a one-size-fits-all government system, which would create far more problems than it would solve."


In Opposition to A New Payroll Tax and Paid Leave Entitlement Program

April 1, 2019

Dear Senators and Members of Congress,

Everyone wants workers to be able to take time off from work when they need it.

Thanks to an improving economy, employers are increasingly offering paid leave benefits to employees, including hourly workers. This is great news, and a trend that we want to continue. However, imposing a payroll tax on workers and creating a one-size-fits-all government entitlement program would be the wrong way to expand access to paid leave benefits.  

  • A new payroll tax would leave all workers with less money in every paycheck. This would particularly burden lower-income workers, making it harder for them to make ends meet and save for retirement and other critical needs.
  • Higher payroll taxes reduce employment opportunities.
  • A one-size-fits-all federal benefit will discourage companies from offering their own paid leave benefits. Some employees would end up with less flexibility and worse paid leave benefits as a result.  
  • Paid leave entitlement programs tend to benefit those with higher incomes and burden those with lower incomes. Research has found this to be the case with paid leave programs enacted in California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Canada, Norway, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Iceland, and Belgium. This isn’t fair.

We the undersigned, representing millions of American workers, oppose a new payroll tax and federal paid leave entitlement program because we want to preserve opportunity, flexibility, and fairness.


Carrie Lukas
Independent Women’s Forum

Grover Norquist
Americans for Tax Reform

Heather Higgins
Chief Executive Officer
Independent Women’s Voice

Ramesh Ponnuru
Visiting Fellow
American Enterprise Institute

Tammy Bruce
Independent Women’s Voice

Tim Chapman
Executive Director
Heritage Action for America

Lisa B. Nelson
Chief Executive Officer
American Legislative Exchange Council

Frayda Levin
Former Small Business Owner

Jason Pye
Vice President of Legislative Affairs

Christina Sandefur
Executive Vice President
Goldwater Institute

Jenny Beth Martin
Honorary Chairman
Tea Party Patriots Action

Bob Carlstrom
The Carlstrom Group, LLC

Katie McAuliffe
Executive Director 
Digital Liberty

Elizabeth Nolan Brown
Feminists for Liberty

Cliff Maloney
Young Americans for Liberty

Penny Nance
CEO and President
Concerned Women for America

Rebekah Bydlak
Executive Director
Coalition to Reduce Spending

Matthew Kandrach
Consumer Action for a Strong Economy

Pete Sapp
National Taxpayers Union

Ryan Ellis
Center for a Free Economy

James L. Martin
60 Plus Association

Saulius “Saul” Anuzis
60 Plus Association

Rick Manning
Americans for Limited Government

Andrew Langer
Institute for Liberty

Karen Kerrigan
President & CEO
Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

Andrew F. Quinlan
Center for Freedom and Prosperity

David Williams
Taxpayers Protection Alliance

Phil Kerpen
American Commitment

Kat Murti
Executive Director
Feminists for Liberty

Tom Giovanetti
Institute for Policy Innovation

Maureen Blum
Strategic Coalitions & Initiatives

Jeffrey Mazzella
Center for Individual Freedom

Janet Morana
Executive Director
Priests for Life

Becki Gray
Senior Vice President
John Locke Foundation