Thursday, March 13, 2008

Westmoreland: Budget a plan for bigger government

U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland today voted against the Democrats’ budget for next year, citing the plan’s $683 billion tax hike and massive increase in spending. The Democrats’ record-breaking budget passed on a tight party-line vote.

“You have to give the people who wrote this budget some credit for managing to pack in so many things that are offensive to Georgia taxpayers,” Westmoreland said. “No bill is perfect but this budget may be perfectly bad.

“Remember the Bill Clinton tax hikes of 1993 that outraged Americans and led to the Republican takeover of Congress in 1994? Well, this tax hike is three times bigger than that. It calls for tax rate increases for every American worker.”

The budget calls for a $683 billion tax hike over five years. Instead of using the money to close the budget deficit, but instead will fuel wasteful new spending – the plan will increase discretionary spending by 8.8 percent. Further, it raises marginal rates for all workers; eliminates 10-percent bracket for low-income earners; reduces the child tax credit; reimposes the marriage penalty and death tax; and eliminates incentives for investment in U.S. businesses.

“My colleagues on the other side love to talk about the economic slowdown in the country,” Westmoreland said, “but for the life of me, I can’t understand how they think that the biggest tax hike in American history is going to help kick-start the economy. With a shrinking job market and widespread foreclosures, we need to work to make sure that Americans keep as much of their own money as possible.”

Westmoreland voted for the Republican alternative budget. The GOP proposal would balance the budget within five years without raising taxes; it implements a moratorium on earmark spending, and dedicates the savings to tax cuts and deficit reduction. Lastly, it takes significant steps to rein in entitlement spending to preserve Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid for future generations.
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