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Mr. STARK. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 8. I cannot support legislation that prioritizes millionaires over middle class families. By bringing this legislation to the floor, Republicans hold hostage the middle class tax cuts in order to help those who need it least. If enacted, this bill would give millionaires an average tax cut of $160,000 next year. Hedge fund managers and corporate CEOs who make up the wealthiest 2 percent of this country do not need a massive tax break. The Republican tax plan on the floor today not only favors millionaires, it takes away tax programs that help working families. Under this legislation, 25 million families and college students in this country will lose as much as $1,000 because of cuts to the Earned Income Tax Credits, the Child Tax Credit, and the American Opportunity Tax Credit. It is these lower and middle income families that deserve our help. It is time to start creating a tax code that reflects our values by ensuring that every individual pays their fair share.
I stand with the House Democrats, the Senate and the President in supporting an extension of the middle class tax cuts. Working Americans are facing high unemployment and stagnant wages. They should have the certainty to know that they will not face a tax increase next year. Extending the middle class tax cuts means helping 114 million middle class families, including 13.2 million in California. If the House extends the middle class tax cuts--already passed by the Senate--these families will save an average of $2,200 on next year's taxes.
This country cannot afford to keep giving out tax breaks to the wealthy and large corporations. This Republican bill adds another $50 billion to our deficit in just one year. This is the wrong approach and is just plain irresponsible. We need to strengthen the middle class, put people back to work, and grow our economy. The first step is introducing fairness to our tax code and helping the middle class Americans who work hard and play by the rules. I urge my colleagues to join me in voting against the Republican giveaway to the most wealthy and to instead support the Democratic substitute which protects the middle class.
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