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Damn the Deficits, the Children of the Wealthy Need More Tax Breaks

Graphic: Ken_Mayer on Flickr

Few things better demonstrate the ludicrous futility of the Senate’s deficit hysteria than Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s (D-AR) and John Kyl’s (R-AZ) long fight to cut the estate tax. From The Hill:

Their proposal would require Democratic leaders to amend the small-business jobs bill with a provision that sets the estate tax at 35 percent with a $5 million exemption. These amounts will be phased in over a 10-year period and also be indexed for inflation. In addition, inherited assets would be taxed at their worth upon transfer, not when the deceased purchased them.

When the estate tax temporarily expired last year because of how the Bush tax cuts were structured, the rate was 45 percent. If nothing is done, it will soon go back to 55 percent, so this measure by Lincoln would be a further reduction of the estate tax to a level even lower than that pushed by Bush.

This is a tax on the amount that children of the wealthy inherent from parents or grandparents. It affects only millionaires, making it purely a tax cut for the very rich. Yet several Senators are pushing for this benefit for the rich, even though it would add hundreds of billions to the debt, long term.

This push for a lower estate tax by the Senate, just like the Obama Administration’s push to make sure wealthy Wall Street hedge fund managers pay a lower tax rate than high school principals, shows how little the deficit hypocrites really care about the issue. The deficit always takes a backseat to deficit-expanding tax breaks for the rich or corporate welfare programs.

This effort to reduce the estate tax is proof that the current hysteria about reducing the deficit is nothing more than a secret way to exploit regular people (i.e., cut Social Security) so we can afford to keep giving the rich more tax breaks. Trying to “reduce the deficit” has sadly become nothing more than the polite code phrase Senators use to advance class warfare on behalf of the wealthy against middle-class working families.

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Damn the Deficits, the Children of the Wealthy Need More Tax Breaks

Few things better demonstrate the ludicrous futility of the Senate’s deficit hysteria than Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s (D-AR) and John Kyl’s (R-AZ) long fight to cut the estate tax. From The Hill:

Their proposal would require Democratic leaders to amend the small-business jobs bill with a provision that sets the estate tax at 35 percent with a $5 million exemption. These amounts will be phased in over a 10-year period and also be indexed for inflation. In addition, inherited assets would be taxed at their worth upon transfer, not when the deceased purchased them.

When the estate tax temporarily expired last year because of how the Bush tax cuts were structured, the rate was 45 percent. If nothing is done, it will soon go back to 55 percent, so this measure by Lincoln would be a further reduction of the estate tax to a level even lower than that pushed by Bush.

This is a tax on the amount that children of the wealthy inherent from parents or grandparents. It affects only millionaires, making it purely a tax cut for the very rich. Yet several Senators are pushing for this benefit for the rich, even though it would add hundreds of billions to the debt, long term.

This push for a lower estate tax by the Senate, just like the Obama Administration’s push to make sure wealthy Wall Street hedge fund managers pay a lower tax rate than high school principals, shows how little the deficit hypocrites really care about the issue. The deficit always takes a backseat to deficit-expanding tax breaks for the rich or corporate welfare programs.

This effort to reduce the estate tax is proof that the current hysteria about reducing the deficit is nothing more than a secret way to exploit regular people (i.e., cut Social Security) so we can afford to keep giving the rich more tax breaks. Trying to “reduce the deficit” has sadly become nothing more than the polite code phrase Senators use to advance class warfare on behalf of the wealthy against middle-class working families.

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at http://pendinghorizon.com