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Agreement in Washington: Protect the Middle Class from Year-end Tax Hikes
03:27 PM EDT
There’s one thing in Washington that everyone agrees on: income taxes should not increase on middle class families.
Middle class families are the heart and soul of America, and the driving force behind our economy. And today, the middle class lies at the center of the debate in Washington about jobs, taxes, and the deficit. If Congress does not act by year’s end, the typical middle class family of four will see their income taxes increase by over $2,000 - which means that much less money in a family budget for groceries for dinner, gas in the car or a holiday gift for a loved one.
Republicans, Democrats and Independents agree that the middle class should not see their income taxes rise. Yet, some Members of Congress are insisting that we hold up tax cuts for 98 percent of families in order to protect the top 2 percent of income earners in America.
Today, the White House National Economic Council released state-by-state reports about the real-life impact of these tax increases on America’s middle class families if Congress fails to act by January 1. Not only will families across the country see an increase in federal income taxes, but families stand to lose out on expansions to the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit. In addition, millions of families will no longer get help paying for college from the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which provides up to $10,000 over four years to help families afford college.
Take this example for a typical family of four living in Texas:
A typical median-income Texas family of four: a married couple with two children earning
$65,900 would see a $2,200 tax increase.
- A tax increase of $1,000 because the Child Tax Credit will fall from $1,000 to $500 per child.
- A tax increase of $890 because of merging the 10 percent tax bracket into the 15 percent tax bracket.
- A tax increase of $310 because of the expiration of marriage penalty relief that provides a larger standard deduction for married couples.
Total Tax Increase on this Family if Congress Fails to Act = $2,200
Preventing this income tax increase on middle class families is simple. President Obama has said he is ready to sign legislation that will provide security to 98 percent of Americans and 97 percent of small businesses. The Senate has passed it and the House of Representatives needs to act.
Meanwhile, news is spreading across the country about what January 1st could mean for middle class families:
ME- Portland Press Herald: Maine’s Senators: Wealthy can wait
MI - Detroit News: Obama to discuss economy, tax cuts Monday in region
MN – Star Tribune: White House says middle-class Minnesotans could pay the price
NC – News & Observer: White House warns N.C. families of tax hikes if we go over fiscal cliff
OK – The Oklahoman: Tax credits also at stake in fiscal cliff debate, White House says
OR – The Oregonian: White House outlines consequences if Oregon falls off the fiscal cliff
RI - Providence Journal: Obama: 400,000 RI families would see tax increases if Bush tax cuts expire
TX – Dallas Morning News: Fiscal cliff: White House highlights impact on Texas middle class
WV – Charleston Gazette: Off the fiscal cliff: White House details how a dive would affect West Virginians
For a state-by-state breakdown on what these tax increases could mean for middle class families if Congress fails to act, please see: