In a bid to gain election-year political points, President Obama announced Monday during a White House press conference that he would support extending the Bush-era tax cuts for people earning less than $250,000.
The president touted his fidelity to not raising tax rates on the middle class—a major 2008 campaign promise— while ignoring the Supreme Court finding that upheld the Obamacare mandate as a tax. According to The Blaze three-quarters of those being affected will be those earning less than $120,000.
In 2010 Obama signed a bill to extend all of the Bush-era tax cuts until the end of 2012. Now, continuing his attempt to frame the economic debate around two fundamentally different ways to grow the economy, Obama wants to claim he raised taxes only on the wealthiest Americans.
Americans for Prosperity president Tim Phillips called Obama’s concession to extending some Bush tax cuts “belated” and “a politically motivated ruse of the kind this President has practice for many months. The President should explain why he’s raising taxes on millions of middle class Americans with his health care law… it is ironic that after blaming his own economic failures on the Bush administration for four years, now the President is trying to hide behind President Bush’s tax cuts in order to save himself politically.”
- Medicine Cabinet Tax, which took effect in 2011;
- Flexible Spending Account Cap;
- Medical Itemized Deduction Hurdle;
- Health Savings Account Withdrawal Tax Hike, which will all begin in 2013;
- Individual Mandate Tax, which will reach full effect in 2016;
- Indoor Tanning Services Tax, which began in 2010;
- and the “Cadillac” Health Insurance Plan tax, which begins in 2018 because unionized workers were issued a temporary deferral.
In an appeal to small business owners, Obama said, “This isn’t about taxing job creators; this is about helping job creators.”
But since 2011, Obamacare has imposed a tax on manufacturers and importers of pharmaceuticals, taxes which will be passed on to the mostly-middle class consumers.
Additionally, Republicans noted that Obama’s plan would raise taxes on more than 900,000 small business owners who report their income in individual returns as so-called flow-through enterprises.
Although Obama blamed “a stalemate in Washington” for inaction on extending these tax cuts, Obama’s proposal puts him at odds even with leaders of his own party. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Sen. Charles E. Schumer have advocated extending the cuts for everyone who earns up to $1 million.
House Republicans plan to vote later this week on a permanent extension of all the Bush tax cuts. The Senate is not expected to vote.
Republicans are also expected to cast a symbolic vote on repealing the Obama administration’s health care overhaul this week.
House Speaker John Boehner noted that the health care law makes ‘it harder for small business to grow and hire. We have already announced that later this month we will boost economic growth and create jobs by preventing the looming, massive tax hikes and providing a fairer, simpler tax code.”
Regardless of Congress’ activity, Obama’s claim that he does not support tax increases on the “98 percent of Americans who make less than $250,000″ is outright dishonest. The central object of his presidency has been health care, and the middle class will bear the brunt of its costs.