Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Profile In Courage Award: Suzanne Kosmas

"Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican," President Harry Truman said. "People will vote for the real Republican all the time." Rep. Suzanne Kosmos has not learned that lesson. Kosmas voted against the Affordable Health Care for America Act. An internal poll of potential Republican opponent Craig Miller finds 66 percent of Republicans undecided. The best way for Kosmas to differentiate herself is not parrot Miller's position on the Bush tax cuts.

Kosmas wrote a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi urging her to extend the Bush tax cuts. Kosmas writes tax cuts for dividends and capital gains. These are taxes on profitable stocks. Wall Street is hiring again. Increased earnings in the financial industry have not produced jobs. The Bush tax cuts decreased the size of the middle class by 4.2 percent. What Kosmos is proposing is nonsense and an act of political cowardliness.

Dear Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Hoyer and Chairman Levin:

As you are aware, without action, the tax rates established under the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 and the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 are set to expire at the end of the 2010. As I have discussed with my colleagues and with economists, we must extend these tax rates in order to give our fragile economy the time it needs to recover from the ongoing crisis. Working families and small businesses in our communities are doing everything they can to make ends meet during these difficult times, and we need to make sure that they continue to have the tools they need to succeed.

Continuing this tax-relief is a common-sense measure that will ease the burden for middle-class families and provide tax certainty for small business owners looking to invest and create jobs. Extending the 2001 and 2003 tax rates will provide continuing stability to the millions of families who have benefited from reduced taxes. In addition, the 2001/2003 tax cuts lowered rates not only for ordinary income, but also for dividends and capital gains, which create incentives that are crucial to private sector investment and give our small business owners the opportunities and financial security they deserve. If we allow these tax rates to expire we run the serious risk of weakening job growth and economic expansion at a time when our economy has begun to recover.

The best way to reduce our deficit is to grow our economy. Allowing the 2001 and 2003 tax rates to expire before our economy fully recovers may reduce our ability to support our small businesses, stimulate the economy, and bring our deficit under control in the future. Given our fragile recovery, I urge you to support extending the 2001 and 2003 rates in order to allow our economy to fully strengthen and grow.


Suzanne Kosmas

Member of Congress

Kosmas is promoting trickle down economics. I find it hard to believe any economist told her extending the Bush tax cuts would create a surplus. Conservative economist Bruce Bartlett has a list of quotes from Bush administration economists saying the opposite.

Alan Viard, senior economist at Council of Economic Advisers during Bush’s first term.

“Federal revenue is lower today than it would have been without the tax cuts. There’s really no dispute among economists about that.”

Robert Carroll, deputy assistant secretary for tax analysis at the U.S. Treasury Department during Bush’s second term.

“As a matter of principle, we do not think tax cuts pay for themselves.”

Former Treasury Sec. Henry Paulson.

“As a general rule, I do not believe that tax cuts pay for themselves.”

I challenge the Kosmas campaign to provide me with the economists who told her the Bush tax cuts would reduce the deficit. I will be waiting for a response.

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