GREEN PARTY OF THE UNITED STATES
For Immediate Release:
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Scott McLarty, Media Coordinator, cell 202-904-7614, email@example.com
Starlene Rankin, Media Coordinator, 916-995-3805, firstname.lastname@example.org
Obama's compromise tax package will blow up the deficit, undermine Social Security, say Greens urging House Democrats to vote nay
• Tax-cut deal with GOP seals Obama's betrayal of working Americans who elected him, say Greens
• Green Party Speakers Bureau: Greens available to speak on economic justice, taxation, and budget policy: http://www.gp.org/speakers/speakers-economic-justice.php
WASHINGTON, DC -- Green Party leaders urged House Democrats to stand firm and do what they can to block President Obama's tax package, calling it a capitulation to the Republican Party that will expand the deficit and undermine Social Security.
"The tax cut is evidence that President Obama isn't compromising with Republicans, he's adopting their agenda," said Howie Hawkins, 2010 Green candidate for Governor of New York and co-chair of the Green Party of New York State. "Greens warned that should the President's tax package pass, Democrats will be the ones initiating the half-century GOP plan to dismantle Social Security. Since the plan extends unemployment benefits by diverting some payroll taxes away from Social Security, it weakens the safety-net for working Americans and defers the financial hit a little bit longer."
Green Party leaders praised Sen. Bernie Sanders (Ind.-Vt.) for his eight-and-a-half-hour speech on the Senate floor about the damage that the President's tax package will do to the Social Security trust fund and the safety net for low- and middle-income Americans.
Green leaders said that if either Democrats or Republicans want to reduce the deficit and restore domestic financial stability, they should reduce the military budget and work to end the military occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. The Green Party has repeatedly called for such action, as well as for requiring the rich to pay their fair share in taxes, since tax breaks for the wealthy have contributed even more to the deficits than bloated military funding, as the CBO has repeatedly documented over the last decade.
"It's no secret that maintaining the Bush tax cuts for people who don't need a tax break will do very little to stimulate the economy. The Congressional Budget Office confirms that for every one dollar in tax cuts, only 10 cents to 40 cents are returned to the economy. The tax cuts may drain $4 trillion from the US treasury in revenue," said Laura Wells, 2010 Green candidate for Governor of California.
"Republicans have little concern for the deficit or for the nation's unemployed. The swollen deficit is attractive to Republicans because it leads to a fiscal crisis in which agencies and public-sector jobs get shut down, regulation of corporations goes unenforced, and privatization of public resources and services is fast-tracked," Ms. Wells added.
The tax bill will raise taxes on working people: about 40% of workers (about 45 million households out of just over 100 million total households) by replacing the Making Work Pay tax credit with the Social Security payroll tax cut (http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20025087-503544.html). Greens also faulted Democrats for not fighting to extend unemployment benefits for "99ers," about 2 million unemployed whose benefits ran out in their 100th week of unemployment.
Greens called the GOP obsession with the estate tax, which affects the top three-tenths of one percent of Americans, typical of a party that exists solely to serve the most powerful corporate interests and the wealthiest income brackets. "Populist" Tea Party favorites elected to Congress and conservative 'Blue Dog' Democrats have signed on to the same plutocratic agenda, and Democratic Party leaders repeatedly cave in to their demands, regardless of which party controls Congress, said Greens.
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"Compromise Tax Cut Plan Tilts Heavily in Favor of the Well-Off"
Citizens for Tax Justice, December 7, 2010
"Note on the Tax Deal"
By Sam Smith, The Progressive Review, December 7, 2010
"Alternatives to Austerity"
By Joseph E. Stiglitz, Project Syndicate, December 6, 2010
"Obama-GOP tax deal the beginning of the end of Social Security, Sen. Sanders says"
By Edward W. Dolan, The Raw Story, December 14, 2010
"What Bernie Said"
By William Rivers Pitt, truth-out.org, December 14, 2010
Green Pages: The official publication of record of the Green Party of the United States (Fall 2010 issue now online)