Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson tonight voted in support of H.R. 8 – the American Taxpayer Relief Act. Among its provisions, H.R. 8 cuts taxes for nearly all taxpayers. The measure also permanently fixes the Alternative Minimum Tax and provides a $10 million per couple exemption from the estate tax.
“While I remain a strong proponent of a more comprehensive approach to solving our nation’s long-term fiscal crisis, this bill is a critical piece of legislation that lowers taxes for nearly every taxpayer,” said Simpson. “The unfortunate reality is that under current law every taxpayer was hit today with a tax increase. The bill we passed blocks those tax increases for nearly all Americans -- effectively lowering the taxes they were to begin paying today. It is also important to note that H.R. 8 will provide permanent tax certainty for individuals, families, businesses, and farmers who are ready to invest their money but have been reluctant to do so without knowing how much they’ll be taxed. Resolution of the tax rate uncertainty is critical to economic recovery and job creation.”
Among its many provisions, H.R. 8 would:
- Protect individuals making less than $400,000 and families making less than
$450,000 from the tax increases contained in current law.
- Allow the payroll tax cut to expire.
- Enact a permanent patch to the Alternative Minimum tax
which was set to impact up to 30 million Americans.
- Provide a $10 million per couple exemption from the estate tax.
- Prevent a 27 percent reduction in payments to Medicare providers.
- Extends unemployment benefits through 2013.
Simpson also stressed his strong belief that Congress and the White House must agree to a larger, more comprehensive package of spending cuts and reforms to entitlement programs and the tax code to put our nation on a stronger fiscal footing. “The passage of this bill does not diminish the fact that Congress and the White House must remain committed to a much larger and more comprehensive package of deficit reduction measures in the very near future,” said Simpson. “That package must include significant reductions in discretionary spending and major reforms to both entitlement programs and our outdated tax code. These reforms should be aimed not only at reducing our deficit in significant ways, but at creating a pro-growth tax code and putting entitlement programs on a much stronger path toward solvency for both current and future retirees.”
Simpson is among a group of House members leading the Go-Big Coalition which is advocating an aggressive approach toward reducing the deficit by at least $4 trillion over the next ten years through a combination of spending cuts and reforms to the tax code and entitlement programs.