Washington, DC — With Republicans planning to raise taxes on teachers and middle-class families across America before skipping town for the October recess, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Max Baucus and Senator Charles Schumer, House Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Charles Rangel and Representative Rahm Emanuel joined Dorothy Egbufor, the Director of Professional Issues at the Washington Teacher’s Union, to call for a new direction for America’s economy. A fact sheet is attached below.
Republican leaders in Washington are blocking the renewal of tax extenders critical to the economic security of businesses and middle-class Americans across America. This new effort to raise taxes on the middle-class will strip away important protections that allow teachers to deduct the cost of school supplies they’re forced to buy for their students While Democrats have repeatedly worked to prevent this shameful tax hike, Washington Republicans have blocked them at every turn, even going so far as to hold the economic security of millions hostage to massive, fiscally irresponsible tax handouts for a few thousand multi-millionaires.
“Three times in this month, I requested consent to take up and pass agreed-upon language to renew and extend vital tax measures like the research and development tax credit and the college tuition deduction. Three times, the majority said no,” said Baucus. “The repeated refusal to renew these tax cuts for American families and businesses is a dereliction of duty by those in charge of the Congress, and the American people have a right to be angry today about the tax increases they are facing as a result.”
“When the average family sits around the kitchen table and asks what has Congress done this year, they probably can’t come up with an answer,” Schumer said. “What people are looking for is help since dollars are being stretched in every direction. But unfortunately, this Republican Congress has wasted precious time and squandered the last four months by focusing fantastical, rather than real issues. And when it comes to protecting the middle class, the greatest affront of all is the Republicans allowing the college tuition tax deduction to expire. It’s the most clear cut case of Republicans putting the cares of the a few wealthy Americans over the needs of millions of middle class who are being crushed by the rising cost of college.”
Said Egbufor, “I am concerned that that an important tax break used by many teachers–a $250 deduction for those that buy school supplies for their students– will no longer be available and that another very important tax benefit that has expired–the $4000 deduction for college tuition–will not be extended. We need to provide teachers with all the support we can as they work to meet new professional, personal and academic demands.”
At a time when middle-class Americans are already struggling with rising costs and stagnant wages, it is unacceptable to raise their taxes. Democrats are working to ensure Congressional Republicans don’t block such critical tax extenders, and are fighting to take America in a new direction.