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04 December 2009

Westmoreland: Democrats Impose Grim Tax Reaper

United States Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R - Georgia) opposed the re-implementation of the estate tax (aka “death tax”), which passed the House Thursday.

“There are almost too many problems with this legislation to count,” Westmoreland said. “It’s a double tax on income that’s already been taxed, it’s a potential death sentence for small businesses that are capital intensive and don’t have liquid assets, and it’s not indexed for inflation – meaning this legislation will hit more and more small businesses with each passing year.”

HR 4154 makes the death tax permanent with a top rate of 45 percent and a $3.5 million exemption (not adjusted for inflation). Under current law, there will be no death tax for 2010, but it would then revert to 2001 levels (55 percent rate) in 2011 and thereafter.

“The death tax has many unintended consequences,” Westmoreland continued. “For one thing, it creates a disincentive for saving and investment. For another, it’s aimed at ‘the rich,’ but it’s actually led to many industries being run by a few giant corporations. That’s because small businesses such as local newspapers or radio stations or funeral homes couldn’t pay the death taxes.

“Lastly, America works best when it rewards hard work and ingenuity. This legislation punishes our nation’s job creators, which seems to be a running theme under this Democratic Congress, and yet they can’t seem to understand why the unemployment rate keeps going up.”