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Roskam Talks Fiscal Cliff, Tax Reform on CNBC


Location: Washington, DC

Today, Chief Deputy Whip Peter Roskam (R-IL) appeared on CNBC's Power Lunch to discuss capital gains rates and what the House is doing to prevent the coming fiscal cliff.

On the Roskam Bill to Cap Capital Gains and Dividends Rates at 15%

There's nobody that's really making a straight faced argument that says we need more taxes to create a more robust economy. My argument is let's create predictability, let's make the U.S. the best jurisdiction to invest in, let's make the U.S. the best jurisdiction to save in, let's make the U.S. the best jurisdiction to create jobs in. Capital gains in the formation of capital is inextricably linked to our long term prosperity and I think there's a strong argument to be made by that.

On Congressional Democrats Breaking with the President's Plan to Raise Taxes

If you start to look at some of leading Democrats and what they're starting to say; they're moving away from President Obama's position on some of these tax rate issues and the capital gains issue is related to that. And I think what's happening is look, Main Street is saying we've been underserved by the past four years based on where the economy is growing, there is a relationship to capital formation. They may not call it that but there's a recognition that capital has to form in order to create investment and long term prosperity. So there's no reason we should be having 8 percent unemployment and this is a remedy to move us forward.

On Preventing the Fiscal Cliff

The House has acted already to do two things. The House said let's pass the current tax rates for another year, but don't do them just for the sake of doing them; do them as a bridge to fundamentally reform the tax code, which is some of the Ways & Means and the Senate Finance hearing consideration that was under way earlier.

On Replacing the Senseless Defense Cuts, Known as Sequestration

The House has also acted and said, "Here's an alternative to the sequestration that is poised to happen.' Remember, sequestration was never meant to be policy; it was meant to be so provocative to move the Super Committee to action. So there's an opportunity to do this. I've been disappointed on the other side of the aisle; there's been some leading Democrats that have said that they embrace the fiscal cliff and that we need to go over it. And that makes no sense to me. Pursue that for the sake of party dogma, and to put the economy in a riptide? Doesn't make any sense. My hope is that after the election, cooler heads will prevail and we'll be able to come up with something sensible.

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