Bradley Byrne on Tax Reform
Politicians often run for office saying they won't raise taxes, but then quickly turn their backs on the taxpayer. The idea of the Pledge is simple enough: Make them put their no-new-taxes rhetoric in writing.
In the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, candidates and incumbents solemnly bind themselves to oppose any and all tax increases. While ATR has the role of promoting and monitoring the Pledge, the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is actually made to a candidate's constituents, who are entitled to know where candidates stand before sending them to the capitol. Since the Pledge is a prerequisite for many voters, it is considered binding as long as an individual holds the office for which he or she signed the Pledge.
Since its rollout with the endorsement of President Reagan in 1986, the pledge has become de rigeur for Republicans seeking office, and is a necessity for Democrats running in Republican districts.
Heritage Action Summary: This bill would repeal the estate and generation-skipping transfer taxes, as well as cut the top gift tax rate.
Heritage Foundation recommendation to vote YES: (4/16/2015): Collectively, these measures repeal the pernicious double tax known as the "death tax," and result in a tax cut of $269 billion over 10 years. The death tax hurts economic growth and therefore limits the ability of Americans to prosper. Repealing the death tax would generate an average of 18,000 jobs annually and increase the overall net worth of American households by $300 billion a year. The federal government should encourage, not punish, Americans who work and pay taxes their whole lives, save enough to support themselves through retirement, and retain the ability to fulfill the American Dream by passing along a better life to their children.
Secretary of Labor Robert Reich recommendation to vote YES: (robertreich.org 6/4/2015): At a time of historic economic inequality, it should be a no-brainer to raise a tax on inherited wealth for the very rich. Yet there's a move among some members of Congress to abolish it altogether. Today the estate tax reaches only the richest 2/10 of 1%, and applies only to dollars in excess of $10.86 million for married couples or $5.43 million for individuals. That means if a couple leaves to their heirs $10,860,001, they now pay the estate tax on $1. The current estate tax rate is 40%, so that would be 40 cents. Yet according to these members of Congress, that's still too much. Our democracy's Founding Fathers did not want a privileged aristocracy. Yet that's the direction we're going in. The tax on inherited wealth is one of the major bulwarks against it. That tax should be increased and strengthened.
Legislative outcome: Passed by the House 240-179-12; never came to vote in Senate.
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Stacy Lee George
Senate races 2019-20:
AK: Sullivan(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
AL: Jones(D,incumbent) vs.Moore(R) vs.Mooney(R) vs.Rogers(D) vs.Tuberville(R) vs.Byrne(R)
AR: Cotton(R,incumbent) vs.Mahony(D)
AZ: McSally(R,incumbent) vs.Kelly(D)
CO: Gardner(R,incumbent) vs.Madden(D) vs.Baer(D) vs.Walsh(D) vs.Johnston(D) vs.Romanoff(D)
DE: Coons(D,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
GA: Perdue(R,incumbent) vs.Tomlinson(D)
IA: Ernst(R,incumbent) vs.Graham(D) vs.Mauro(D)
ID: Risch(R,incumbent) vs.Harris(D)
IL: Durbin(D,incumbent) vs.Stava-Murray(D)
KS: Roberts(R,retiring) vs.LaTurner(R) vs.Wagle(R)
KY: McConnell(R,incumbent) vs.Morgan(R) vs.Cox(D)
LA: Cassidy(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
MA: Markey(D,incumbent) vs.Liss-Riordan(D) vs.Ayyadurai(R)
ME: Collins(R,incumbent) vs.Sweet(D) vs.Gideon(D)
MI: Peters(D,incumbent) vs.James(R)
MN: Smith(D,incumbent) vs.Carlson(D)
MS: Hyde-Smith(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
MT: Daines(R,incumbent) vs.Collins(D)
NC: Tillis(R,incumbent) vs.Smith(D) vs.Mansfield(D) vs.mith(R)
NE: Sasse(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
NH: Shaheen(D,incumbent) vs.Martin(D)
NJ: Booker(D,incumbent) vs.Singh(R)
NM: Udall(D,retiring) vs.Clarkson(R) vs.Oliver(D) vs.Lujan(D)
OK: Inhofe(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
OR: Merkley(D,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
RI: Reed(D,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
SC: Graham(R,incumbent) vs.Tinubu(D) vs.Harrison(D)
SD: Rounds(R,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
TN: Alexander(R,incumbent) vs.Sethi(R) vs.Mackler(D)
TX: Cornyn(R,incumbent) vs.Hegar(D) vs.Hernandez(D)
VA: Warner(D,incumbent) vs. (no opponent yet)
WV: Capito(R,incumbent) vs.Swearengin(D)
WY: Enzi(R,incumbent) vs.Ludwig(D)
Senate Votes (analysis)