Soothing the sting of Tax Day

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Today is a day that millions of Americans across the country have come to dread as they hand over much of their hard earned incomes to the federal government. However, this year, Tax Day is an even tougher pill to swallow. The Democratic Congress continues to tax and spend with a reckless disregard for our hard working middle class. The average American shells out more than 27 percent of their income in federal, state, and local taxes, which partially supports one-third of Americans who currently pay no federal taxes—yet reap government benefits. But instead of lightening the load for those already struggling to make ends meet, President Obama and his Democratic leaders in Congress just continue to rack up more debt and a bigger deficit while expecting taxpayers to foot the bill.

At a time when unemployment has affected nearly 15 million nationwide—it is clear the remedy for our ailing economy does not include tax hikes or federal spending increases. In his first year in office alone, President Obama hit a record level of deficit spending of $1.5 trillion. Our children and grandchildren, and those generations after them, will be forced to repay this debt—likely with significant tax increases because of spending on which they never got a say.

In one of the worst examples of deficit spending, Speaker Pelosi and Senator Reid rammed a costly health care reform bill down the throats of the American people—who had so clearly rejected it. Over the past year, American citizens across the country spoke out against Obamacare through rallies, online media outlets, and town hall meetings. But, despite taking such a firm stand, Democratic leaders still moved forward with a reform that takes the reins away from the individual and places them into the hands of the government. Indeed, their plan is a slippery slope to nationalized health care.

Additionally, Obamacare will raise taxes by billions of dollars on those earning less than $200,000 per year—no wonder why the majority of Americans pushed for a “no” vote. Not to mention, the new law requires all individuals to purchase health insurance (which is now punishable by law) and also provides for the federal funding of abortion, both of which are fundamentally unconstitutional. Now, Obama advisors like Paul Volcker are floating the idea of a “value-added tax” on top of our current tax structure. The spending course Democrats have put us on is unsustainable, but their solution is just to tax Americans more to pay for it.

What we are seeing in Washington is not the change Americans demanded. We must change course in Washington. Republicans are calling for a fresh era of fiscal discipline, which starts by repealing Obamacare—a bill that allows for $1.2 trillion in new spending and $570 billion in new tax increases. The American people didn’t and still don’t want it, and they shouldn’t be forced to have it.

Come November, I hope the American people remember that while millions struggled nationwide to make ends meet, President Obama and the Democratic Congress continued to pile it on. Maybe after the upcoming elections, next year’s Tax Day won’t sting so much.

Republican Rep. Phil Gingrey, M.D., represents Georgia’s 11th Congressional District.