Rep. McDermott Introduces Level-Headed Estate Tax Bill

Rep. Jim McDermottWashington Representative Jim McDermott (D) introduced an estate tax bill yesterday that is pretty level-headed. H.R. 2023, the Sensible Estate Tax Act, would create a permanent estate tax with a $4 million exemption for couples and a 45 percent tax rate on the amount of an estate that is above that $4 million exemption. Larger estates would pay a higher tax rate. All I can say is it is about time.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer has the scoop:

In a news release, his office said the Democrat introduced the Sensible Estate Tax Act and that it "would finally and fairly reform existing tax law that swings wildly between collecting no revenue to collecting billions from year to year, threatens tens of billions in existing revenue to the Treasury and affects only a fraction of 1 percent of the very wealthiest Americans."

The McDermott bill would cost about 20 percent less than the proposal supported by President Obama to make the 2009 levels of the estate tax permanent. The Joint Committee on Taxation has scored the McDermott bill as costing $202 billion over the next 10 years. Obama's proposal would cost $256.2 billion, according to BNA ($).

Kind of crazy that we're calling a tax bill that gives $20 billion a year away to the richest 1 percent of Americans "sensible and level-headed," but I guess that's the world we're living in right now.

Image by Flickr user orionlee used under a Creative Commons license.

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