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How to transform the Bush Tax Cuts into the Obama Tax Cuts

By       Message Al Rodbell       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   1 comment

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If Democrats weren't so used to running scared they could see the clear answer. Raising taxes on the American people were approved by a Republican Congress and signed into law by a Republican president on June 7, 2001. The tax cuts, according to this law, took effect the next year, the increase was to take effect on January 1, 2011. The law, The Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001, requires both the lowering and the raising of taxes.  If it was the Bush tax cut, then it sure as hell is also the Bush tax increase! 

Let the tax cut expire at the end of the year. We now have a new base rate, the one voted and signed by a Republican Administration.  Fox News and Rush Limbaugh, and the collection of members of congress will all spout the same outrage, but let them do exactly that.  Each time they do, read a list of every Republican Representative and Senator who voted for the bill that mandated this rate increase in the vote of 2001. 

Now, with a clean slate, a base of higher taxes, the Democrats propose a comprehensive tax plan that would reduce taxes for 99% of the population, everyone under a quarter of a million a year, exactly as promised by Candidate Obama. There could be an additional higher rate for income over a million, as suggested by Warren Buffet and Bill Gates, who understand that it is what government supplies that allows fortunes to be made.

To make the distinction clear between the Bush Tax Cut of 2001 and the Obama Tax Cut of 2011, the exact marginal rates should be slightly changed, made a touch more progressive, still keeping the campaign promise not to raise tax for the vast majority. The Republicans will control the House next year, so while Democrats will not be able to introduce this Obama tax cut there, he can do so during the state of the union message to Congress.  And then let the Republican dare ignore this proposal for a massive tax reduction!

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Once the Bush Tax increase has been allowed to take effect, there would be enough to place various stimulus items for the working class, that would have an immediate multiplier stimulus effect. It would also be the perfect balance, the combination of increased revenue and lowered spending, that Obama showed he had the courage to take on with freezing federal salaries. 

This is a rare opportunity for the Democratic party to reverse the growing disparity of wealth in this country, while beginning to solve the malignant deficit. This would be a game changer, it would make it absolutely clear to the public whose side the two parties are on.

This is a unique opportunity. Democrats need to take a lesson from Republicans on constantly repeating a phrase, a  talking point, until it catches on.  When current law expires we need to drum into the public mind: it is not Democrats raising taxes, it is the Republican law that mandated tax increases.    And then as Republicans fold and accept the Obama tax cut, it will be the Democrats who lowered the taxes of the vast majority of Americans, over resistance of Republicans who were looking out for the ultra rich.

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Retired Commercial Printing Executive, developer of I.T. systems for the industry. Advanced degrees in Social Psychology, now living in Southern California

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