Tags: Saxby | Chambliss | Bush | cuts

Sen. Chambliss: House Won't Raise Taxes On Top Two Percent

Sunday, 11 Nov 2012 01:56 PM

By Stephen Feller

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Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., dismissed the tax bill already passed in the Senate which would extend the Bush tax cuts for 98 percent of Americans as partisan, saying on Sunday that he did not think it could pass in the House.

Chambliss said on ABC’s “This Week” that tax and entitlement reforms will be part of any deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, but that much of the revenue lawmakers are looking for would come from closing loopholes and deductions for the top 2 percent.

“We have the ability between now and the end of the year to not go off the cliff,” Chambliss said. “But we can't accept an unfair deal that piles on the middle class and tell them they have to support it. We have to make sure that the wealthiest Americans pay their fair share.”

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“Bowles-Simpson said, look, eliminate all these tax credits and tax deductions. You can generate somewhere $1 to $1.2 trillion in additional revenue. You can actually lower tax rates by doing that.”

He said the still sluggish economy could not handle raising taxes on anybody, especially not those who make more than $250,000 because of the potential effect to small businesses and jobs.

A study by Ernst and Young found that extending anything but all of the Bush tax cuts would lead to the immediate elimination of 700,000 jobs — which is not what the economy needs.

The solution on tax cuts, he said, may be to allow all of the tax cuts to expire in January and start over on tax rates for all Americans to level the  playing field for negotiations.

“Because there's no silver bullet, as was discussed in the Simpson-Bowles commission,” Chambliss said, “we’ve got to look at cutting spending. We still spend way too much money in Washington . . . Entitlements are choking us. And we've got to make the real right kinds of reforms there to make sure that we do it right, that we protect these programs.”

Although he said that Congress needs to address all of the spending issues Washington faces, he does not expect it can get done before the Jan. 1 deadline when the cuts are set to expire and the sequestration of $500 billion from the defense budget happens.

Elected officials on both sides of the aisle have said that some portion of the spending issues must be addressed immediately in order to prevent going over the fiscal cliff.

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