Local Commentary, National Commentary

Jim Moran’s News Commentary

The following is Congressman Moran’s statement for the record on fiscally responsible efforts to the repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax.

Madam Speaker, everyone agrees that we must pass Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) relief this year to prevent a tax that would unintentionally hit 23 million American families to the tune of an average of $2000 and that time is of the essence. Everyone also agrees that to do so will cost a substantial amount of money.

What we disagree on is how to make that happen. Our choices are few, and some of them are difficult.

To pass a one year AMT “patch,” we can either raise additional revenues to pay for it from the wealthiest few (less than 5,000 people in the country who make over $1,000,000 a year) or waive fiscally responsible budget rules and continue financing tax cuts by increasing the national debt.

Unfortunately, Republicans and the President chose the second, fiscally irresponsible option.

The Bush Administration has increased U.S. government debt by an average of $15,644.93 per second since they took office. This money does not exist merely on paper – it is real money which we are borrowing from countries, many of whom whose interests are inimical to our own.

This legacy of fiscal wreckage is being left for our children, and our children’s children to deal with.

The idea that we should sacrifice their futures in order to have our cake and eat it too is fiscally unsound. To do so while continuing to give enormous tax preferences to the richest of the rich in this country is morally bankrupt.

The pay-as-you-go budget rules this Democratic Congress has worked to install are designed to force us to make tough decisions, to make a choice between what is right and what is easy.

I cannot and will not support legislation on the AMT that is not fiscally responsible. I urge my colleagues to do the same sending a strong message to the President that this Congress will not continue the fiscally irresponsible trend of the past six years.