It’s not Congress’s money

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There is a lot of talk in Washington these days about a “compromise” on extending the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, but two key points are being left out of the debate. First, this vote is about stopping a massive tax increase — it has nothing to do with cutting anyone’s taxes. The second point is even more important — this is NOT Congress’s money. These dollars belong to the American people who earned them.

Since President Obama took office in 2009, House Democrats have passed $695 billion in tax increases and could soon usher in the largest tax increase in American history. The IRS is already printing the tax tables and forms in preparation for huge tax increases on 75 percent of small business owners and millions of hard working, overburdened Americans. Middle-income American families will be forced to pay tax increases averaging over $1,500 by April 15. Families in my district will see their taxes go up by over $2,000 if House Democrat leaders do not vote to stop it from happening.

Our nation’s economic growth is anemic, and millions of Americans are unemployed or underemployed. According to Moody’s Analytics, if taxes are increased on the Americans who create the most jobs — the top earners — at least 770,000 jobs will disappear. It is self evident that we will see staggering job losses and our flickering economic recovery will be extinguished, if the lame-duck Democrat Congress lets this epic tax increase go into effect on January 1st.

I am a firm believer that taxes should never be increased, but a $3.9 trillion tax increase — the largest in American history — in the midst of the second most severe economic crisis in modern American history would be disastrous.

The only real solution to this crisis is to cut taxes on businesses and individuals, to cut spending dramatically across-the-board, and to roll back job-killing regulations. Conservatives have a plan that reduces government spending to pre-stimulus, pre-bailout levels; saving us at least $100 billion in the first year alone and putting us on a path to balance the budget and begin paying down the debt. In the meantime, we all need to remind the lame-duck Democrats that the nation has spoken and that they have a moral obligation to honor the will of the people and vote to stop this unprecedented tax increase. The outgoing Congress should make all of the current tax rates permanent and keep the money where it belongs — in the hands of the American people who earned it.

Rep. John Culberson represents Texas’s Seventh Congressional District.