Hundreds of Wealthy Americans Say NO to More Tax Breaks for Rich

Emergency Campaign for America's Priorities
For Immediate Release
Contact: Brad Woodhouse or Moira Mack
Date: November 16, 2005
Phone: (202) 955-1002

Hundreds of Wealthy Americans Say NO to More Tax Breaks for the Rich Financed by Spending Cuts on Initiatives which Support the Poor and Middle Class

ECAP, UFE Holds Press Conference Call with Wealthy Americans, Releases Open Letter to Congress Signed by More than 200 Wealthy Americans

Washington - Today, on the eve of an expected vote in the Senate on a tax bill which would pave the way for a windfall of tax breaks for the wealthiest of Americans, ECAP and United for a Fair Economy (UFE) held a national press conference call with half a dozen wealthy Americans who oppose additional tax breaks for themselves and other wealthy Americans which are proposed to be financed by slashing programs for the poor and middle class. In addition to the conference call, ECAP and UFE delivered an open letter to every member of Congress signed by more than 200 wealthy Americans, investors and business owners who expressed their collective opposition to the GOP leadership's effort to slash funding for Food Stamps, Medicaid and student loans to finance tax breaks for the wealthy. The letter and the short biographies of those who participated in today's call can be found below. Where telephone numbers have been provided, these individuals have agreed to be contacted for additional interviews.

BIOS

Richard Adler lives in New Orleans and is retired from a career in shipbuilding. He has substantial stock ownership and would benefit from the tax cuts. He opposes the tax cuts out of concern that the growing federal deficit will leave a terrible legacy of debt for the coming generations, and because government should have funds for rebuilding the Gulf Coast and protecting it from future disasters without cutting food programs for the hungry.

Katherine Harmeyer of Phoenix, AZ is a securities arbitrator, private investor, and retired attorney. She also is a co-owner with her husband Allan of a real estate development firm. Although she is a stockholder and benefits from the reduction in the income tax, dividend, and capital gains rates, and her heirs would potentially benefit from the reduction/elimination of the federal estate tax, Katherine opposes these measures because it is inequitable to shift taxation from wealthy to middle class taxpayers, which only exacerbates the large and growing wealth divide that threatens our democracy.

Leigh Pomeroy is a small business owner and part-time university instructor living in Mankato, Minnesota. He admits being fortunate in that he comes from a family that is quite comfortable and thus has benefited from the tax cuts of the last four years, and would benefit more from cuts in capital gains, dividend and estate taxes.

Bill Creighton from Freeport ME is the owner of Sea Tow Midcoast Maine, a business that provides commercial marine assistance and salvage. He is also a member of Responsible Wealth and a stock owner. Although he would benefit from the tax cuts, he opposes cuts in the capital gains and dividend taxes because he thinks investment income should be taxed at the same rate as income from work as a matter of fairness.

Dr. Elizabeth Letzler is a professor of management at Manhattan College in Riverdale, NY. She is a former banker, Certified Financial Planner, securities arbitrator, and manages a large family portfolio of investments. She and her family are in the top 1% of beneficiaries of the Bush tax cuts, most notably the reduction in tax on dividends. As a signer of the RW Tax Pledge, Dr. Letzler has donated all benefit this year from the reduction in dividend tax to charity.

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An Open Letter to Congress:

We, the undersigned business owners, investors, and wealthy individuals, including members of Responsible Wealth and signers of the Call to Preserve the Estate Tax, believe Congress is setting the wrong priorities by cutting vital services in order to pay for tax cuts that disproportionately benefit wealthy taxpayers and large corporations. The proposed budget would deepen our nation's deficit by $168 billion over the next five years.

The proposed cuts in Medicaid, student loans, child support, and other programs will harm millions of children and their families, including hurricane victims. How can Congress cut key services after Hurricane Katrina exposed deep poverty and huge needs for assistance? A more economically polarized society is not good for any of us. We call upon Congress to join us in embracing a sense of shared sacrifice during this challenging period in our nation's history.

We urge you to pay for rebuilding the Gulf Coast and reduce the deficit by repealing the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for people making over $200,000 per year. This would raise $43 billion next year, according to the Tax Policy Center. Freezing the estate tax, which in 2004 only affected heirs of 31,000 multi-millionaires, would save $41 billion over 5 years. These tax changes would share the sacrifice more fairly.

Another way to fund important domestic priorities is by reducing unnecessary or wasteful military spending.

We ask you to set priorities that put the interests of average Americans before the special interests of big business and the wealthy. We urge you to oppose the misguided budget reconciliation bill.

Sincerely,

name city state affiliation
David Abromowitz Newton MA Goulston & Storrs, PC
Richard Adler New Orleans LA
Justin Alfond Portland ME
Betty Allred Mountain View AR Farm owner
Jim Amaral Alna ME Owner, Borealis Breads
Ed Arildson Bellevue WA
Peri Arnold South Bend IN Univ. of Notre Dame
Marcel Arsenault Superior CO Colorado & Santa Fe Real Estate
Jody James Avtges Reading MA
Brian Backus San Francisco CA Qi Spirits
Michelle Baillet Seattle WA
Richard Baldwin Seattle WA Windermere Real Estate
Betty Bardige Cambridge MA A. L. Mailman Family Foundation
Peter Barnes Pt. Reyes Stn. CA Tomales Bay Institute
James Bastiaanse Holland MI
Tom Bennigson Oakland CA
Lamberto Bentivoglio Etna PA
Jeff Bernstein Seattle WA
Joanne Black NYC NY
Stephen Jones Blessman Chicago IL EDB Organization
Ira Bloom Albany NY Albany Law School
Frans Bouman Las Vegas NV TT&M Associates Pte. Ltd.
Rebecca Brackman Mill Valley CA
Peter Breyfogle Shoreview MN
David Burner Winter Harbor ME Brandywine Press
John Bush Wichita KS
Maggie Bush Wichita KS
Maye Bush Wichita KS
Rixie Bush Wichita KS
Andrew Cadot Freeport ME Business Ldrs. for Sensible Priorities
Philip "Bo" Chagnon Cary NC UUs for a Just Economic Community
Ronald Chew Oak Park IL
Leslie Christian Seattle WA Progressive Investment Management
Patricia Cline, RN Dillsburg PA
Eliot Cohen Silver Spring MD
William Collins Norwalk CT
Bridget Cooke New York NY
Helen Cooluris Sebastopol CA
Leonard Coris Tucson AZ Watermill Financial Group
John Costin Kennebunk ME John Costin Studio
Christopher Covert Scottsdale AZ Investor
Bill Creighton Freeport ME Sea Tow Midcoast Maine
George Croly Santa Maria CA Former CEO GEOVIRCO,INC.
Gina de Miranda Hondo TX LBOH Productions
Ann Deluty Belmont MA Livable Landscapes
Frank DeMarco New York NY
Harriet Denison Portland OR Ralph L Smith Foundation
Charles Denny Minneapolis MN
William Densmore Worcester MA
Jerry Depew Laurens IA
Bob Ellis San Francisco CA
Douglas Erickson Columbus OH Responsible Wealth
Martin Evans Portland OR
John Farris Chicago IL
Rosemary Faulkner New York NY Cornell University
Gordon Fellman Cambridge MA Brandeis University
Catherine Ruth Finnoff Cambridge MA Univ. of MA Amherst
Jane Foulser Elmhurst IL
John Frantz Monroe WI Monroe Clinic
Roslyn Fuerman Berkeley CA
John Furman Utica NY Utica Citzens In Action
Gabriel Gardner Fort Wayne IN
Kathryn Gardow Seattle WA
Richard Gilbert Rochester NY
Susan Glazer Newton MA
Lynn Goldfarb Lancaster PA
Watson Gooch Los Osos CA
Barnett Goodstein Dallas TX ABA, NAA
Neva Goodwin Cambridge MA Tufts University
David Spinning Gordon Seattle WA
Susan Gould, LCSW, BCD Land O' Lakes FL
Kristie Graham Tucson AZ UFE
Dr. Wendy B. Gray Cleveland OH Responsible Wealth
Carol Green Truro MA
Karen Grove Menlo Park CA
Hayden Groy Reedsburg WI
Doug Hammond Hatfield MA Relief Resources
Robert Hanrott Washington DC
Chalmers Hardenbergh Yarmouth ME Atlantic Northeast Rails & Ports
Brenda Hardt Brenham TX Methodist Church
Katherine Harmeyer Phoenix AZ
Daniel Harston, Jr Penn Valley CA DSH Financial Services
Aaron Hartwell Seattle WA FEMA
Thomas Hatheway Seattle WA HATHEWAY & ASSOC, PLLC
John Hawkins South Strafford VT
Barry Hermanson San Francisco CA Responsible Wealth
Arnold Hiatt Weston MA The Stride Rite Foundation
Patricia Hiles Santa Barbara CA Attorney
Lynn Holbein Newton MA
Donald N. Horenstein Burlington VT
Joan Hotchkis Santa Monica CA Responsible Wealth
William Hughson St Michaels MD
Judith Jesiolowski Bellevue WA Responsible Wealth
David H. Jones Seattle WA Respiratory Therapist
DeWitt Jones Jamaica Plain MA Boston Community Capital
Gretchen Kafoury Portland OR Oregon Center for Public Policy
Mark Kalenscher Portland OR Private Investor
Mike Kappus San Francisco CA The Rosebud Agency
Judith H. Katz Washington DC Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group
John Keevert Brockport NY
Don Kelly Gillham AR
Lori Kenschaft Arlington MA Responsible Wealth
David Kirkpatrick Durham NC SJF Ventures
Joseph Kresse Redwood City CA
Jennifer Ladd Northampton MA Class Action
Tracey Lake San Francisco CA
Dal LaMagna Poulsbo WA Pres., Tweezerman Corp.
Cheri Langlois Mendocino CA
Mike Lapham Boston MA Responsible Wealth
Prakash Laufer Florence MA Motherwear International
Rabbi Mordechai Liebling Philadelphia PA Shefa Fund
Amy Lepak Sudbury MA Responsible Wealth
Elizabeth Letzler Baldwin NY Manhattan College
George Levinger Amherst MA
John Levy Mill Valley CA UFE
Julie Lewis Portland OR Jade Planet
Judy Lightstone Berkeley CA UUCB
Margaret Lincourt Little Rock AR
Michael Litt Lake Oswego OR
Stephanie Low New York NY Stephanie Low Artists Inc
Emelyn Lybarger Lewis Center OH
Tom Martin Seattle WA
Bryce Mathern Seattle WA
Andrew McHenry Kansas City KS
Karen McHenry Kansas City KS
Merrill McHenry Kansas City KS
Roxy McHenry Kansas City KS
Trent McHenry Kansas City KS
William McHenry Kansas City KS
Joan McInnes Batavia IL
Robert McLendon Tallahassee FL SBA
Susan McRae Olympia WA
Arul Menezes Sammamish WA Microsoft
Christopher F Miller Gray ME MaineStreet Communications, Inc.
Edward Mills Bellevue WA
Susan Mirsky Newton MA
Terry Mollner Shutesbury MA Exec. Dir., Trusteeship Inst.
John Moltz Tacoma WA Giant Squid Productions
Jane Moosbruker Bolton MA
Stuart Mork Seattle WA PSP
Cheryl Moskal Lakewood CO
Deborah Nelson San Francisco CA Co-Exec. Dir., Social Venture Network
Egon Neuberger East Setauket NY Prof. Emeritus, Stony Brook U.
William M. O'Donnell Roscommon MI Universal Enterprises
Sumner Peirce Ft. Lauderdale FL
Paul Perkins Hamilton MA
Ralph L Peters Rancho Santa Fe CA
Chris Petersen Clear Lake IA Iowa Farmers Union
Drummond Pike San Francisco CA Pres. & Founder, Tides Fndn.
George Pillsbury Cambridge MA Center for Nonprofits and Voting
Jean Pogge Chicago IL
Sandy Polishuk Portland OR Responsible Wealth
Leigh Pomeroy Mankato MN The Red Jacket Company
Roger Pritchard Berkeley CA
Kevin Quinn Ontario CA
Kieron Quinn Sparks MD Quinn Gordon & Wolf
Pat Rabby Lexington MA Responsible Wealth
Sara Ransford Aspen CO
Amelie Ratliff Brookline MA Responsible Wealth
Ian Raymond Laconia NH Raymond Photography
Stephanie Rogall Sun City West AZ Responsible Wealth
Gerald B Rosenstein San Francisco CA United for a Fair Economy
Barbara Ross Jefferson Cty MO Dir., Social Concerns Ofc., Diocese of Jefferson City
Martin Rothenberg Jamesville NY Glottal Enterprises
Michael Rothkopf Piscataway NJ Rutgers University
Stewart Rowe Cincinnati OH
Lyndon Ruhnke Portland OR United for a Fair Economy
David Rust Iowa City IA
Cathy Salser Venice CA A Window Between Worlds
Peter Sammond Minnetonka MN PabEtaber Ltd
Brietta Savoie Glen Rock NJ
Eric Schoenberg Franklin Lakes NJ
Phil Schoggen Nashville TN Tennessee Disability Voters
Eric Schwartz Binghamton NY Binghamton Univ.
Judith E. Schwartz Palo Alto CA To the Point
Gerald Scorse New York NY
Robert S. Seltzer, C.P.A./P.F.S. Malibu CA
Sayre Sheldon Cambridge MA
Margo Simmons Falmouth ME Working Assests
Joyce Sirlin-Rand Ithaca NY
Paul G. Sittenfeld Cincinnati OH
Lacey Sloan Limerick ME Owner, Boggy Hill Egyptian-Arabians
Eric Smith Seattle WA Certified Financial Planner
Martin Sobel Sarasota FL Marbel Associates, Inc.
Carleton Spotts Columbia MO
John C Stahler, M.D. Clayton OH
Robert Stanfield Pipersville PA
Alice Stowell Somerville MA Community Learning Center
Andrew Strauss Asheville NC Strauss & Associates, PA
Susan Swan San Francisco CA Responsible Wealth
Chet Tchozewski Boulder CO Global Greengrants Fund
Tom Thomas Doylestown PA Thomas Travel Service
Marnie Thompson Greensboro NC Responsible Wealth
Anthony Trupiano Jacksonville FL
Basil Twist San Francisco CA The Pachamama Alliance
Cathy Verret Eugene OR Product Awareness Consulting, LLC
Claudia Viek San Francisco CA Claudia Viek Consulting
Frank Vigil Stanford CA Digital Media Savvy Corp.
Philippe Villers Concord MA Pres. Grainpro Inc
Marcia Wake Windham ME Architect
Robert Wake Windham ME
Mal Warwick Berkeley CA Mal Warwick & Assoc., Inc.
Barry & Elsa Waxman Dummerston VT
Shirley Weissmann Mercer Island WA
Jeff Whittington San Francisco CA Codecology, Inc.
Nola Wilken Portland OR Wilken & Company, P.C., CPAs
Anthony Yee Manhattan NY Eng & Yee Designs, Inc.
Margaret Yonco-Haines Garrison NY Philipstown for Democracy
Barbara A. Zeluck New York NY

 

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