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Public Statements

Senate Leadership

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. HATCH. Mr. President, today I join my colleagues in expressing my disappointment in President Obama, in his failure to provide real leadership when our Nation needed it the most. While his failures can be observed across the board, when it comes to taxes and the impending fiscal cliff, the President has put our entire economy in jeopardy in order to serve his own political interests.

At the end of this year, the bipartisan tax relief signed into law not only by President Bush but by President Obama as well is set to expire. Virtually every taxpayer in America will see their taxes go up if Congress and the President do not act to steer us away from this fiscal cliff. Objective analysts, including the CBO, have stated that if we were to let the tax relief expire under current economic conditions, it would likely lead to another recession. Yet, rather than working with the Republicans to extend the tax relief and to aid our recovery, the President has once again sought to divide the American people by using the top marginal tax rate as political football.

In 2010 the President acknowledged that raising taxes in the midst of a weak economic recovery was bad policy. That is why at that time he signed into law the full extension of the 2001 and 2003 tax relief. Aside from the fact that the economy is in worse shape now than it was then, the only thing that has changed between 2010 and 2012 is that the President is now facing the voters, and that means appealing to his base, which is committed to raising taxes. The President has put class warfare and his own political future ahead of the immediate and long-term interests of our economy. This is the high-water mark of failed leadership for this administration. Our country is at a moment of deep economic uncertainty, and America's citizens and taxpayers deserve more than the President's decision to prioritize electoral politics over sound fiscal policy.

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