Congressman John Garamendi

Representing the 3rd District of California
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Congressman Garamendi’s Offers Alternative to Tax Cut Compromise in Letters to Speaker Pelosi & President Obama

December 7, 2010
Press Release

Garamendi Proposes Trimming One Year from Tax Cuts for Rich,
Using $70 Billion in Savings to Invest in 1 Million Teachers & Infrastructure

WASHINGTON, DC – In letters sent to President Obama and Speaker Pelosi today, Congressman John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek, CA) offered an alternative to the tax cut framework offered by the President and Congressional Republicans.

Since Congressional Republicans refuse to budge on their support for unfunded tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, Garamendi proposes extending tax cuts for the rich for only one year, saving $70 billion. Garamendi proposes investing the saved $70 billion into education and infrastructure, with $50 billion paying for at least a million teachers and $20 billion putting the construction sector to work retrofitting and constructing school and university buildings.

Pdfs of his letters are available here: Speaker Pelosi and President Obama. Garamendi’s letter to Speaker Pelosi is also below:

December 7, 2010

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Speaker
U.S House of Representatives
H232, The Capitol
Washington, D.C.  20010

Dear Madame Speaker:

In view of President Obama’s and the Congressional Republicans’ recently announced framework agreement regarding tax cuts and unemployment insurance, we must closely examine the proposal on its ability to create jobs and help our economy grow. As you said, “The tax proposal announced by the President clearly presents the differences between Democrats and Republicans.  Any provision must be judged by two criteria:  does it create jobs to grow our economy and does it add to the deficit?” Cutting taxes for the very rich is misguided in that it will not create jobs and needlessly adds $140 billion to the deficit.

We must fight for the middle class. We must also recognize the need for compromise. Therefore, I propose the following changes to the announced framework agreement that I think make the package a victory for the middle class and our economy:

- Extend the middle class tax cuts for two years (up to $250,000 in gross adjusted income for couples);

- Extend the tax cuts for earners above $250,000 for one year, saving approximately $70 billion from the framework; and

- Invest the saved $70 billion in education and infrastructure ($50 billion to hire at least one million teachers and $20 billion for school and university building renovations and construction).
 

All other portions of the framework can remain as proposed. A report released today by the Program for International Student Assessment revealed that America has dropped to 17th in the world in science and 25th in math educational performance. Our economic competitiveness demands that we must prioritize education over tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires.

With the crucial changes I have proposed, we will help stimulate the economy, put well over a million more Americans back to work, and invest in the middle class and our future prosperity.

Sincerely,
JOHN GARAMENDI
Member of Congress