Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, senior member of the Florida Congressional Delegation, issued the following statement after she voted against the conference legislation on the economic stimulus bill:
"There is no denying that our hard working families are going through tough economic difficulties but, unfortunately, this bill does not offer solid relief fast enough. I support an alternative plan which would cost half as much and provide twice as many jobs. I want to work with colleagues in a bipartisan manner to help our sluggish economy and throw a badly needed lifeline to our middle class.
We are especially hit hard in South Florida with runaway foreclosures, bankruptcies, unemployment and low confidence in the economy. Families do not believe that what is happening in Washington will have any benefit to them.
Congressional Budget Office officials estimated the bill's tax relief provisions would mean about $13 a week more in people's paychecks. This amount will do little to truly stimulate the economy and increase the purchasing power of our working class families.
Our alternative plan would provide immediate relief to middle-class taxpayers and small businesses; an average benefit of up to $1,200 for working families through the reduction of the lowest individual tax rates from 15% to 10% and from 10% to 5%, with a married couple who file jointly saving up to $3,200 a year in taxes.
This bill will sadly saddle future generations with massive debt and that is unacceptable, especially when we presented an alternative that has many more benefits for our middle class families."