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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 4, 2003
2:59 PM
CONTACT: Fair Taxes for All Coalition 
Peter Montgomery of People For the American Way, 202-467-4999
Margot Friedman of National Women's Law Center, 202-588-5180
Tiffany Ricci of AFSCME, 202-429-5047
Michelle Woolley of Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, 202-263-2881
Fair Taxes for All Coalition: Treasury Secretary Snow's Record Undercuts Pitch for Tax Cut
 
WASHINGTON - March 3 - Following is a statement by the leaders of the Fair Taxes For All Coalition:

Treasury Secretary John Snow's attempts to promote the latest Bush tax cut plan before the House Ways and Means Committee today are undermined by the record of the company he used to lead, said leaders of the Fair Taxes For All Coalition. Moreover, the Bush Administration is being irresponsible by pushing for the tax cut when it has not told the American people how much a war with Iraq may cost.

Secretary Snow's argument that Congress must eliminate the income tax on dividends because it represents "double taxation" doesn't add up. Here's why:

-- CSX, the company that used to be headed by Secretary Snow made $974 million in profits over the last 4 years. During that period the company paid no corporate taxes at all. Instead it received a $164 million rebate. There is no way to double tax that.

-- CSX is just one example. The fact is that profits aren't taxed heavily at the corporate level. Last year only one-half of corporate profits were subject to the corporate income tax, and only a small portion of those are paid out as dividends. -- Corporate income tax revenue as a share of all federal tax revenues has been falling for decades -- from almost 14 percent in 1972 to less than 9 percent in 2001. By 2000, U.S. corporations paid some of the lowest corporate taxes in the developed world. Corporate taxes paid on profits generated in the U.S. are now 22nd lowest out of 29 industrial countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). -- The whole concept of double taxation is specious. We pay taxes on income, and then we pay sales tax on purchases when we use that income. Is that double taxation? Is it double taxation when we pay our property taxes, utility taxes, gas taxes or any other tax with the same income on which we have already paid income taxes? We do get a deduction for some of these taxes on our income taxes, but Bush is not proposing a deduction -- he's proposing to eliminate taxation on dividend income altogether.

And the Bush tax cuts won't do anything to stimulate the economy. Over 450 economists -- including 10 Nobel Prize winners -- have signed a letter saying that the Bush tax cut plan will not provide a short-term economic stimulus. In addition, it will worsen the long-term budget outlook, reducing the government's ability to finance Social Security, Medicare, investments in schools, health, infrastructure and basic research.

Americans don't want to take billions from the Social Security Trust Fund and other critical priorities and use them for tax breaks for millionaires. Yet, tax filers with an adjusted gross income of over $1,000,000 would get an average tax cut of $90,000 from the Bush "growth" package -- while the middle 20 percent of the population would get a tax cut of only $256. (Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center). Thirty-one percent of the nation's taxpayers would get no benefit from the Bush tax cuts; almost half (48 percent) would receive less than $100.

The time has come to say enough is enough. Congress must stand up and stop this irresponsible Bush tax cut. For more information, please visit the Fair Taxes for All Coalition's Web site at http://www.FairTaxesForAll.org.

The Fair Taxes for All Coalition is a massive coalition of coalitions co-chaired by People For the American Way, AFSCME, the National Women's Law Center, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, US Action, and the Campaign for America's Future.

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