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Public Statements

American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. PASCRELL. The American people are the real winners here tonight, not anyone who navigates these halls. Let's make that clear.

We don't have a perfect bill in front of us--in fact, we've never had a perfect bill in front of us--but this is a bill which will provide much needed certainty to millions of middle class American families that their income taxes will not increase.

Since the recession in 2008, there has been a 25 percent increase in the number of families below the poverty line in my home State of New Jersey. I'm sure we'll see more as a result of the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. Lest we forget before tomorrow that we need to respond to that storm as all of us responded to the other catastrophes over the past 10 to 15 years. We should not have exceptions, particularly from those States who are donor States. If you want to get into nickels and dimes, then let's get into nickels and dimes. We've done our share and will continue to do it. We want everybody to step up to the plate.

We've been able to help families in need by extending the earned income tax credit to 563,000 New Jersey taxpayers, who will earn an average of $2,169 more because of the program. We have also helped 460,000 New Jersey families take advantage of the child tax credit. Many of you, regardless of which State you come from, your constituents have taken advantage of that great program. Almost 400,000 have been able to use the education tax credits.

Lest we forget what we've done on the alternative minimum tax, the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee will tell you how many times alternative minimum tax comes up, and yet we did nothing about it, pushing it patch to patch, year to year. In just one county in my district, 87 percent of the families have been affected.

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