Estate Tax Update
by Guest Blogger, 9/30/2002
Efforts to make the estate tax permanent continue in Congress. In the midst of all of the other issues facing the nation and the crowded congressional schedule, this shows how much importance conservatives attach to relieving the very wealthiest of Americans from paying taxes when they transfer their wealth.
On September 19, the House passed a non-binding “Sense of the House Resolution” (House Resolution 524) that Congress should complete action to permanently repeal the estate tax. Americans for a Fair Estate Tax, the nonprofit coalition headed by OMB Watch, sent a letter to the House opposing this resolution. On the same day, Sens. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and Phil Gramm (R-TX) were at it again in the Senate, proposing to attach various versions of permanent repeal of the estate tax to the “Small Business and Farm Economic Recovery Act of 2002” bill, which was scheduled to be marked up in the Finance Committee but suddenly postponed. It was not clear how permanent repeal of the estate tax, at a cost of $100 billion over ten years, could be “attached” to the Small Business bill that costs about $15 billion over ten years, or where the offsets would come from. It is now unknown when or how permanent repeal of the estate tax will show up again, only that it probably will. We’ll keep you posted.