Saturday, December 11, 2010

Opposing The Tax Deal’s Handcuffs: Progressives in Congress Speak Out


53 House Democrats oppose Obama Tax Deal

Dec 10, 2010 - In a significant demonstration of opposition to President Obama's tax deal, 53 members of the U.S. House came out against the President's proposal Thursday morning, Dec.9. In a letter sent to Speaker Pelosi Thursday, they called the proposal "fiscally irresponsible" and "grossly unfair."

"America is wading into fiscal quicksand. Borrowing nearly a trillion dollars to finance tax cuts that disproportionately favor millionaires and billionaires threatens our ability to create jobs, grow the middle class and protect seniors," Welch said. "Digging the country deeper into debt to pay for misguided tax policy is irresponsible and simply doesn't make sense."

The letter, which Rep. Peter Welch (VT) authored and first circulated late Monday, was signed by: Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Judy Chu, Yvette Clark, Steve Cohen, John Conyers, Elijah Cummings, Danny Davis, Peter DeFazio, Donna Edwards, Keith Ellison, Anna Eshoo, Sam Farr, Bob Filner, Barney Frank, John Garamendi, Alan Grayson, Raul Grijalva, Luis Gutierrez, Alcee Hastings, Martin Heinrich, Maurice Hinchey, Rush Holt, Jay Inslee, Jesse Jackson, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Paul Kanjorski, Dennis Kucinich, Barbara Lee, John Lewis, Ben Ray Lujan, Steven Lynch, Doris Matsui, Jim McDermott, Mike Michaud, Jim Oberstar, John Olver, Chellie Pingree, David Price, Tim Ryan, Linda Sanchez, Jan Schakowsky, Carol Shea-Porter, Adam Smith, Jackie Speier, Pete Stark, Betty Sutton, Bennie Thompson, Mike Thompson, Paul Tonko, Anthony Weiner, Lynn Woolsey, David Wu and John Yarmuth.

The full text of the letter is copied below:

Dear Madam Speaker,

We oppose acceding to Republican demands to extend the Bush tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires for two reasons.

First, it is fiscally irresponsible. Adding more than $900 billion to our national debt, as this proposal would do, handcuffs our ability to offer a balanced plan to achieve fiscal stability without a punishing effect on our current commitments, including Social Security and Medicare.

Second, it is grossly unfair. This proposal will hurt, not help, the majority of Americans in the middle class and those working hard to get there. Even as Republicans seek to add billions more to our national debt in tax cuts to the wealthy, they oppose extending unemployment benefits to workers and resist COLA increases to seniors.

Without a doubt, the very same people who support this addition to our debt will oppose raising the debt ceiling to pay for it.

We support extending tax cuts in full to 98 percent of American taxpayers, as the President initially proposed. He should not back down. Nor should we.


Member of Congress

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