Apple CEO Tim Cook will testify before Congress on Tuesday as a bipartisan Senate probe seeks answers on how the tech giant used tax loopholes to avoid paying taxes on $44 billion in offshore, taxable income between 2009 and 2012.
“What we intend to do is to highlight that gimmick and other Apple offshore avoidance tactics so that American working families, who pay their share of taxes, understand how offshore tax loopholes raise their tax burden and how those loopholes add to the federal deficit,” said Chairman of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI).
The tax dodging charges place Apple in the uncomfortable position of defending itself for not having paid its “fair share” of taxes. Indeed, Apple users have been shown to be more liberal than PC users. And Apple employees donated over ten times as much to the campaign of President Barack Obama--who pledged to raise taxes on upper income Americans--as they did GOP challenger Mitt Romney.
Still, Apple says it broke no laws, paid nearly $6 billion in taxes in 2012, does not use tax gimmicks, and is a job creator.
Whether that answer will sit well with progressive Apple customers remains to be seen.
Either way, critics like Senate Democrat Carl Levin remains incensed and poised to pounce.
“You can’t justify this kind of profit shifting with [these] kind of gimmicks,” said Levin.