Opinion

Kentucky congressman: Jim Beam sale to Japan 'a failure of our tax code'

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Food and Drink,Charlie Spiering,Taxes,Kentucky,Japan

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., believes that the sale of the company that makes Jim Beam and Maker's Mark bourbon to a Japanese company was a result of bad tax policy in the United States.

"I feel like that could be a failure of our tax code," he explained, when asked for comment on the sale by the Washington Examiner.

The news came as a shock to American bourbon drinkers, particularly comedian Ron White, who vowed never to drink Jim Beam or Maker's Mark again.

Suntory Holdings Ltd., a privately owned Japanese company, announced on Monday the purchase of Beam Inc. for $13.6 billion.

Massie noted that the Kentucky distillery was not in his district, but he said he closely follows the bourbon business in his state.

"We need tax reform, we need significant tax reform, the domestic distillers are at a disadvantage," he added, promising to explore the issue further.

"I need to investigate it more, but I think we might have been a victim of bad tax policy," he said.

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