Mr. YARMUTH. Mr. Speaker, soon we are going to have to decide how to treat the Bush tax cuts. We are going to have to decide whether or not to indebt the American people another $700 billion to extend benefits, tax benefits, for the richest 1 percent of the country.
Before we go too far in feeling sorry for that 1 percent, consider this:
From 2001 to 2006, 53 percent of all gains, total gains, in income in this country went to that 1 percent. That is right, one out of every two dollars went to the richest 1 percent. That is where the economy has gone.
The growth in this country has benefited primarily the richest people in the country, and we now have the greatest disparity in wealth that we have seen in this country in almost 100 years.
Heed the words of the Roman priest Plutarch, who once wrote: An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics.
Let's keep that in mind when we consider what to do with those tax cuts for the richest 1 percent of Americans.