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Public Statements

Middle-Class Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2004

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC


MIDDLE-CLASS ALTERNATIVE MINIMUM TAX RELIEF ACT OF 2004 -- (House of Representatives - May 05, 2004)

Mr. LINDER. Mr. Speaker, by direction of the Committee on Rules, I call up House Resolution 619 and ask for its immediate consideration.

The Clerk read the resolution, as follows:

H. Res. 619
Resolved, That upon the adoption of this resolution it shall be in order to consider in the House the bill (H.R. 4227) to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend to 2005 the alternative minimum tax relief available in 2003 and 2004 and to index such relief for inflation. The bill shall be considered as read for amendment. The previous question shall be considered as ordered on the bill and on any amendment thereto to final passage without intervening motion except: (1) one hour of debate on the bill equally divided and controlled by the chairman and ranking minority member of the Committee on Ways and Means; (2) the amendment in the nature of a substitute printed in the report of the Committee on Rules accompanying this resolution, if offered by Representative Rangel of New York or his designee, which shall be in order without intervention of any point of order, shall be considered as read, and shall be separately debatable for one hour equally divided and controlled by the proponent and an opponent; and (3) one motion to recommit with or without instructions.

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Mrs. LOWEY. Mr. Speaker, I rise today on behalf of the more than 2 million taxpayers who are unfairly burdened by the alternative minimum tax. As we know and it was explained today, it was designed in 1969 to ensure that the wealthiest Americans would still pay a fair share of taxes. The AMT now ensnares many middle income Americans in what was once envisioned as an alternative minimum tax has become nothing short of a mandatory maximum tax. And those it sought to protect have become its greatest victims.

Let us be clear on what the AMT is not. It is not a technicality of significance to only a few bureaucrats and the tax intelligentsia. It is not a mere glitch, the repair of which would only help a handful of disproportionately rich individuals. It is a system that affects 2.4 million families this year. A system that, if left unchecked, will affect nearly 75 percent of families making $75,000 to $100,000. It is a system that, in my district, can cost an individual making a good living, but not a lavish living and taking itemized deductions, thousands of dollars more in taxes each year.

In 2008, a family making over $50,000 with three children would be affected. Any family with one child or more, 60,000 would be affected.

[Time: 12:00]

Although I am pleased to see bipartisan support to act to ameliorate the AMT, these temporary remedies will only be as valuable as the permanent solutions developed in the interim. These measures have the potential to help millions of families this year, but we must work together to crack the system that protects all hardworking Americans going forward.

I support the fiscally responsible Rangel substitute and urge my colleagues to help put an end to the inequities of the alternative minimum tax.

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