Friday, November 26, 2010

The Bush Tax Cuts -- History

I don’t really want to provide an analysis of the “Bush tax cuts” but I find the history interesting. For the record, the real name is the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003.

”The Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 ("JGTRRA", Pub.L. 108-27, 117 Stat. 752), was passed by the United States Congress on May 23, 2003 and signed into law by President George W. Bush on May 28, 2003. Nearly all of the cuts—individual rates, capital gains, dividends, estate tax—are set to expire after 2010.

Among other provisions, the act accelerated certain tax changes passed in the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001, increased the exemption amount for the individual Alternative Minimum Tax, and lowered taxes of income from dividends and capital gains.”

These are the tax cuts that are set to expire unless Congress does something in its current lame duck session.

The thing I found so interesting was the original vote in the Senate. To spare you from having to decipher it, all Republican Senators voted for it and all Democrats against it except...

Zell Miller (D-GA) and Ben Nelson (D-NE) voted for it.

Lincoln Chaffee (R-RI) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) voted against it. Along with...wait for it...John McCain (R-AZ) voting Nay.

By the way, the vote was a 50/50 tie broken by Darth Vader Dick Cheney, who, of course, voted for it. It will be interesting to watch the vote on this one.

Don Brown
November 26, 2010

P.S. As ever, thanks to Paul Krugman for providing a research starting point.


David Pardo said...

John Mccain, ever the principled maverick, opposed tax cuts for the rich then to spite Bush, who defeated him in the GOP primary. Now all he does is oppose Obama.

He's a very petulant man.

Kevin said...

And where have all those tax cuts gotten us?

There was a time when I bought the Republican line of thinking that lower tax rates created for a more robust economy but one need only compare Clinton's 8 years with Bush's 8 years to see it's not so simple. I understand 9/11 makes that an apples to oranges comparison but it does shoot a hole in the theory that higher taxes stifle economic growth as we saw a record amount of jobs created under the relatively higher tax years of Clinton.