Letter to Senator Cantwell: We Do Not Want Estate Tax Pre-Payment

Quill and Parchment

Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) is considering a proposal to weaken the permanent estate tax law by allowing wealthy taxpayers to pre-pay their estate tax with a 35% tax rate while living, in return for having no exemption.

This proposal is a bad idea, because it is borrowing from the future.

The economic crisis is already causing millions of people to lose their jobs and homes, and Senator Cantwell’s proposal would result in reduced funding for programs that would otherwise provide much needed services to the majority of Americans. The proposal would end up shifting more tax responsibility onto middle-income taxpayers. It would only benefit those with estates worth more than $15 million, so it would not benefit the farmers and small businesspeople Senator Cantwell says she wants to support.

UFE is working, in collaboration with the Washington Community Action Network, to convince Senator Cantwell to drop her proposal and to support a stronger estate tax. Please join us by signing onto the letter below.

Letter

Dear Senator Cantwell,

We are writing about your draft proposal for a permanent estate tax law that allows wealthy taxpayers to pre-pay their estate tax with a 35% tax rate while living, in return for having no exemption.

We feel this proposal is a bad idea, for three major reasons:

  1. The proposal would likely reduce significant revenue over the long-term that could be used for programs that help people, at a time when the economic crisis is causing millions to lose their jobs and homes.
  2. It would end up shifting responsibility for paying taxes from the wealthiest few onto middle income taxpayers.
  3. It would benefit only people with more than $15 million in wealth, rather than the farmers and small businesspeople you want to help, whose estates are smaller.

Our country needs to make investments that rebuild the middle class with jobs, health care, education and other public services – not give the richest quarter of one percent an opportunity to pay even lower taxes.

We urge you not to offer this proposal.  Instead, we request your support for a permanent estate tax that is stronger than the 2009 law, and certainly no weaker.

Sincerely,

The form below is for Washington State residents to sign on to the letter. Public listing of signatories will include name, title, business or organization (if provided) for identification purposes only, and city and state.

Please enter as XXX-XXX-XXXX

Please enter as XXX-XXX-XXXX



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