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GOP Pressing for Vote on Estate Tax Before November Elections
- May 5th, 2006
Republican members of Congress are pushing for action on the federal estate tax before the November elections. Most GOP members and President Bush support repealing the tax altogether. However, in a speech before pro-repeal activists, Senator John Kyl (R-Ariz) stated that it was unlikely there were enough votes in the Senate for outright repeal. Worried that any action on the estate tax will be more unlikely after the November elections if Republicans lose seats in the House and the Senate, Kyl is proposing a compromise, which he hopes can muster the votes to pass.
Repealing the estate tax has been one of President Bush's priorities since he entered office. "I'm trying to come up with something because of the fact that time is limited here. Our position is eroding," Kyl said.
Kyl is proposing increasing the estate tax exemption to $5 million. Currently, only estates worth more than $2 million are taxed by the federal government. This is scheduled to rise to $3.5 million in 2009. For the year 2010, estates will be entirely free from federal taxation. However, the law that includes this provision expires at the end of 2010. Thus, unless Congress acts in the interim, the estate tax exemption will then revert to $1 million. The Senate is supposed to vote on the estate tax sometime this summer.
A recent study revealed that the lobbying effort to repeal the estate tax has been led by 18 super-wealthy families. The report also claims the families have misled the public on the importance of the estate tax to most Americans.
For more information on the Kyl proposal, click here.
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