This week, the Obama administration announced it was considering plans to circumvent Congress and act alone to crack down on the practice.
Economic analyst Robert Reich wrote last month that Walgreen considered moving abroad as part of its merger with Alliance Boots, the European drugstore chain. “The tax dodge likewise means more money for Walgreen’s investors and top executives. Which is why its large investors — including Goldman Sachs — have been pushing for it,” Reich wrote.
He called the complaint by CEOs that they are suffering larger corporate tax burdens than their competitors overseas “rubbish.”
Had Walgreen moved abroad, it would have cost American taxpayers about $4 billion over five years, according to an analysis by Americans for Tax Fairness.
A coalition of groups, including Americans for Tax Fairness, have been pressuring Walgreen to remain domiciled in the US, threatening to boycott the chain. Some 300,000 people signed an online petition urging Walgreen’s CEO Greg Wasson to not “desert America.”