President Barack Obama will say in a speech Wednesday that Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans shouldn’t be extended, an administration official said on condition of anonymity before the president’s remarks.
Obama will oppose an extension of tax cuts for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans when he speaks in Cleveland, calling on Congress to take other steps to spur hiring and economic growth. Administration officials have endorsed only an extension of tax cuts for households making less than $250,000 annually.
“The president’s viewpoint is that we cannot afford to extend the tax cuts for those making more than $250,000 a year,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said.
Extending 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for individuals earning less than $200,000 annually and families earning less than $250,000 — about 98 percent of all taxpayers — would cost $2.2 trillion in forgone revenue over the next decade, according to an analysis of government data released Sept. 2 by the Pew Economic Group.
Extending all of the tax cuts, including those for the wealthiest Americans, would cost $3.3 trillion over the same period, Pew’s analysis found
“The president has been clear about his support for extending tax cuts for the middle class and about ending the tax cuts for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in an e-mail statement.
Republicans in Congress want to extend all of the tax cuts, passed under President George W. Bush in 2001 and 2003, and some Democrats have indicated they may resist letting the top rates rise.
Obama, making his 10th visit to Ohio, is expected to outline proposals for Congress to help create jobs throughout the country. He also is expected to propose a tax incentive that would allow companies to deduct the entire cost of purchasing equipment, from tractors and computers to solar panels and wind turbines, according to an administration official.
Obama will also urge Congress to pass a permanent tax credit for research and development.
This comes on the heels of his Sept. 6 proposal to invest more than $50 billion to rebuild roads, railways and runways and modernize the air-traffic control system.
In coming to Ohio, Obama is using the same stage as U.S. Representative John Boehner, the top Republican in the House, who last month visited the City Club of Cleveland to call on the president to fire his economic team.
© Copyright 2015 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.