There is little debate right now on Capitol Hill about whether the American economy is struggling. The real conversation in Washington, D.C. and in living rooms across the country is about how to get our economy moving again.
Essentially this debate boils down to one question: Should America promote economic growth and job creation or raise taxes to destroy jobs and economic opportunity?
Beginning this week, Republicans will make all House members decide which side of this debate they are on by forcing votes on a bill I introduced, the Tax Increase Prevention Act (H.R. 2734). House members will have to choose whether they support Speaker Pelosi’s budget proposal that, in total, is the single largest tax increase ever proposed in the history of the United States, a $3,000 per taxpayer tax increase.
With so much money already being wasted in Washington, I believe it is wrong for Congress to try and take more money out of the paychecks of hard-working Americans. My bill would make permanent the tax relief of 2001 and 2003, and stop tax increases on raising children, earning money, saving and investing, operating a small business, adopting a child, paying off college loans and even dying.
Consider the implications of the Democrats’ proposed $680 billion tax hike in 2011 alone:
Marginal income tax rates will increase as follows:
--35% bracket will increase by 13 percent
--33% bracket will increase by 9 percent
Capital gains rates for individuals will increase from 15% and 0% to 20% and 10%.
Restoration of the marriage penalty tax.
The child tax credit will be slashed 50 percent, raising taxes by $500 per child.
The death tax will go from 0% to 55%.
I have always held the conviction that American citizens should keep as much of their hard-earned money as possible. With Americans facing rising health care costs, high energy prices and economic instability, the absolute last thing families need is to be hit with a massive, job-killing tax increase.
Every week in my home state I meet with Michiganders who are working harder than ever before and at best breaking even. Michigan families and businesses have unfortunately felt first-hand the powerful, negative impact of tax increases. These working families’ wages have been slashed by higher taxes on income and on small businesses.
During Governor Jennifer Granholm’s Administration, Michigan has experienced job losses, declining personal incomes, diminishing home values, and the highest unemployment rate in the nation. By proposing a massive $3,000 per taxpayer tax increase, Democrats in this Congress are following the same failed blueprint that Governor Granholm used to drive our state economy into a ditch and destroy Michigan jobs.
Instead of working on tax hikes that ultimately make America less competitive, I believe Congress should stop this $683 billion money grab from taxpayers. Congress could better spend time establishing a commission to end and eliminate ineffective and inefficient government programs.
This week is just the beginning in a long battle over America’s economic future. By making tax relief permanent and continuing to grow our economy, Congress can go a long way to restore the trust of the American people, build a better, brighter future for our country — and avoid the economic suffering now felt in Michigan.
Tim Walberg is currently in his first term in the U.S. House of Representatives, serving Michigan’s Seventh District, which includes Branch, Eaton, Hillsdale, Jackson and Lenawee counties and parts of Calhoun and Washtenaw counties.