While the Senate prepares to debate the Paris Hilton Tax this week, supporters of its abolishment admit they are “well short of the 60 votes required to take up a full repeal measure.” If full repeal fails, Senators may vote on “compromises which are nearly as costly and unfair as full repeal.”
Today, six former White House advisers are urging Senators to oppose these costly proposals that “benefit only the wealthiest three of every 1,000 estates.”
CongressDaily reported last week that Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) may put forward a “counter offer” containing “a graduated rate structure setting rates of 15, 25, and 35 percent depending on the size of the estate.” Today’s letter points out how this also would be very costly:
– This “alternative compromise” would cost nearly 75% as much as full repeal over the long run, according to estimates by the Tax Policy Center.
– Compared to freezing current law at the 2009 levels, this would cost about $200 billion in the decade from 2012-2021.
– When compared to 2009 law, the graduated rate structure cuts taxes by 66% for couples with estates between $7-10 million, by almost half for couples with estates between $10-20 million, and by 20% or more for multi-billion dollar estates.
As Sebastian Mallaby writes in today’s Washington Post, these so-called compromises “would achieve nearly everything that abolitionists dream of.”