Thursday, March 13, 2008

Isakson Votes to Expand Estate Tax Relief

U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today voted for an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2009 Budget Resolution that would increase the exemption for the estate tax, also known as the "death tax," from $2 million to $5 million.

“When the tragedy of death comes, family members are immediately confronted with one of the most punitive and confiscatory taxes that has ever been devised in the history of taxation – the death tax,” Isakson said. “This amendment would have been a huge step in the righting that wrong and would have avoided subjecting an estimated 119,200 families, small businesses and family farms to the estate tax each and every year.”

The amendment would also have established the top death tax rate at no more than 35 percent beginning in 2010. The amendment failed by a 50 to 50 vote.

The President’s 2001 tax package phased out the estate tax over 10 years. Unfortunately, the legislation contained a sunset provision that reinstated the tax at the end of that period. This makes long-term estate planning and retirement planning virtually impossible, since the tax code changes so radically at the end of the 10-year period. Isakson supports permanently repealing the estate tax.

“A full repeal of the estate tax will let our hard-working taxpayers pass along their savings to their children and grandchildren tax-free,” Isakson said. “That’s good for families and small businesses, and it’s good for our economy. I will continue to do everything I can to see that we take action to repeal the death tax permanently.”
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