Commentary: The Gop Had Better Get Business Off The Dole, Too

Christmas came early on K Street. Washington's business lobbyists awoke one morning in late September to find a $40 billion present from Ways & Means Chairman Bill Archer (R-Tex.): a proposal to let companies reclaim and spend massive assets locked away in overfunded pension plans. The loophole was designed mainly to help budget-cutting Republicans, who will garner $10.5 billion in taxes if companies pull out $40 billion in assets, as expected. But Archer's gift was a big hit in Corporate America--and like the very best presents, it was pretty much a surprise. "We didn't ask for it," says a pension lobbyist, "but you can bet we're defending it now."

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