Delaney Voted Against HR 1105

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Congressman Delaney voted against HR 1105, legislation that repeals the federal estate tax. According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, the legislation would add $269 billion to the federal deficit. Under current law, the estate tax only applies to estates worth over $5.43 million dollars (for a single tax payer and $10.86 million for a couple), less than one quarter of one percent of the population.

The House also passed a bill to make permanent a deduction for state and local sales taxes that expired at the beginning of the year. The White House threatened to veto that bill in part because it would have added $42 billion to the budget deficit over the next decade.

Proponents don’t appear to have the votes in the Senate to pass this bill. Even if it passed wouldn’t President Obama threaten to veto a bill that would add $269 billion to the federal deficit?

There are arguments for and against:

Republicans refer to the estate tax as the “death tax.” They say it prevents small business owners and family farmers from passing businesses on to their heirs.

“Can you imagine working your whole life to build up a family-owned business and then upon your death Uncle Sam swoops in and takes nearly half of what you spent a lifetime building up for your children and grandchildren?” asked Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, who sponsored the bill.

Democrats like Congressman John K. Delaney (MD-6) argue “It is important to note that only a very tiny subset of the wealthiest families need to worry about paying the estate tax. The estate tax affects around only 5,500 households each year and an individual must be worth well over $5 million before they pay even a dime of the tax.

Sometimes I think it is all a game our politicians play to get campaign contributions. Republicans say vote for me and I’ll work to get the estate tax killed. Democrats run and say cancelling the estate tax will result in rewarding just a few very rich and the money we lose from this tax will increase the deficit in a time when we need to spend more tax dollars on improving our schools. Send me money to win this election and I’ll work to meet your needs. All that money is contributed and nothing changes. A nice little racket if you ask me.

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