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Treasury Secretary Says Letting Bush Tax Cuts for Rich Expire Will Not Slow Economic Growth


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In an exclusive interview on ABC News’ "This Week" to air Sunday, Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner said the White House would push to let the Bush tax cuts expire for individuals making more than $200,000 a year and families making more than $250,000, but keep them for middle and lower income Americans.

“We think that's the responsible thing to do,” Geithner said, “because we need to make sure we can show the world that they're willing as a country now to start to make some progress bringing down our long-term deficits."

ABC News pointed out that Alan Greenspan, former chairman of the Federal Reserve, told Bloomberg News that letting the tax cuts expire -- which the former Fed Chair supports -- would “probably” slow growth, “but I think we have no choice in doing that, because we have to recognize there are no solutions which are optimum. These are choices between bad and worse.”

In his interview with "This Week," Geithner disagreed.

“Just letting those tax cuts that only go to 2 percent to 3 percent of Americans, the highest earning Americans in the country, expire -- I do not believe it will have a negative effect on growth,” Geithner said.

Tune in Sunday for more of our interview with Secretary Geithner.

-- Jake Tapper
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Well, the headline and Geitner's premise that letting the Bush tax cuts expire will not slow economic growth are probably pretty accurate, since the economic growth couldn't be much slower than it already is. Even a slight downturn would hardly be noticable.


I do not, however, agree that letting the Bush tax cuts expire will only effect the top two or three percent of American taxpayers. In regards to personal income taxes, it will effect every single person who actually pays them. The lowest tax rate goes from 5% to 15%, the marraige penalty returns, capital gains rates go from 15% to 20% (minimum...as high as 28%) and child tax credits disappear (this effects even those wage earners who don't actually pay income taxes).


The Estate Tax (Death Tax) had reached 0% this year, next year it will be up to 55%. Liberals will argue that this only effects rich people, but it primarily has a negative effect on family owned businesses, especially family farms and ranches. Most successful small businesses are asset rich, but cash poor. When a business owner dies and the family is left with a huge tax bill on the estate, they are faced with the option of selling off so many of the assets of the business that it cannot operate competively or selling the whole business outright. This puts more control of our lives in the hands of Corporate America.


Corporate Income Taxes will also increase. The U.S. already has the 2nd highest corporate tax rates in the world....only Japan has a higher national tax on corporate earnings. However, when combined with state corporate rates (which are not allowed in Japan) the combination in 24 states actually makes the U.S. the most prolific taxer of corporations in the world. This hurts every single consumer in the country, since corporations pass the expense of these taxes on to the consumer through the elevated cost of their goods.


Instead of a mere 2 or 3 percent of higher end earners, virtually every American, even those who are not citizens, will suffer if the Bush tax cuts are allowed to expire. Geitner knows this, and so does Zero.


The lies continue.

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