Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL) issued the following statement after voting to permanently extend the Republican-led tax cuts that were originally enacted into law in 2001 under President George W. Bush.
"After months of negotiations, we have taken a giant step to provide certainty and keep taxes low for middle-class taxpayers by permanently extending the tax cuts that were first enacted in 2001. This is tax relief that remains a vital part of our economic recovery and it ensures that millions of middle-class families won't be adversely impacted by increased tax rates in the new year.
"The discussions in Washington have unfairly centered on increasing federal revenue through higher taxes on the backs of hardworking Americans and small businesses, when the focus should be squarely on the unhinged spending spree the current Administration seems content with continuing for the next four years. Now that we have permanently cemented middle-class tax relief, Congress and the White House must address the larger issues of out-of-control spending and reversing the historic record debt and yearly deficits under President Obama. Presidential leadership, which has been lacking the last four years, is a necessary requirement to getting meaningful bipartisan legislation passed and signed into law.
"As a member of the House Ways and Means committee, the chief tax writing committee in the House, we will lead the effort for comprehensive and fundamental tax reform in the 113th Congress. In the last two years, the committee held 30 hearings on the need for individual and corporate tax reform, which has laid the foundation for crafting and passing legislation in the new Congress. As we begin the 113th Congress, now is the time to finish the job and create a simpler and fairer tax code that doesn't penalize hard work, provides additional middle-class tax relief and promotes economic growth and job creation."
The middle-class tax relief package passed into law permanently extends 84 percent of the Bush-era tax cuts, and provides tax relief for 114 million households by an average of $2,000. It provides for the first time a permanent Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) fix for 30 million households, prevents a 27 percent cut to reimburse doctors who treat Medicare patients, permanently extends the child tax credit, and permanently extends the marriage penalty relief.
The tax package also includes Congressman Schock's Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) legislation to assist small businesses who seek to hire new employees off of public assistance. The WOTC has been utilized by businesses to hire over 6 million people in the last 15 years. Additionally, Schock's legislation to incentivize the production and use of biodiesel from such things as soybean oil was included in the final tax package helping preserve an industry which supports close to 25,000 jobs and is important to farmers across the Midwest.