Daily Tax Update - December 30, 2008

THE DAILY TAX UPDATE WILL BE PUBLISHED ON A PERIODIC BASIS UNTIL CONGRESS RETURNS JANUARY 6, 2009.

STIMULUS PACKAGE COULD BE CONSIDERED IN MID-JANUARY:  Congressional Democrats are considering bringing a stimulus plan that could cost $675 billion to $775 billion to the House floor as early as the week of January 12. Advisers to President-elect Obama have discussed a plan that would include about $200 billion in tax cuts for the middle class and businesses, and $350 billion or more to fund an infrastructure improvement program. Some reports have estimated that the stimulus package could reach as high as $1 trillion.

  • A spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said yesterday, “It is essential that we pass legislation to help create jobs and get our economy back on track. Senator Reid understands that the only way that we can do so is with the cooperation of Senate Republicans, and he intends to work on a bipartisan basis to pass an economic recovery package.”
  • A spokesperson for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated, “The state of our economy demands swift approval by both the House and Senate of an economic recovery and job creation package. While the House process is still being determined, the House has already laid the groundwork for this package with numerous hearings and the bipartisan package passed in September.”
  • In a statement released yesterday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “As of right now, Americans are left with more questions than answers about this unprecedented government spending, and I believe the taxpayers deserve to know a lot more about where it will be spent before we consider passing it.” McConnell’s statement added, “This will require the consideration of alternative ideas, public Congressional hearings and transparency—not a rushed, partisan take-it-or-leave-it approach. Taxpayers, already stretched to the limit, deserve nothing less.”
  • On Sunday, a senior adviser to President-elect Obama said, “Look, we feel it's important that middle-class people get some relief now...This package will include a portion of that tax cut that will become part of the permanent tax cut he'll have in his upcoming budget." The adviser was hopeful that the new stimulus plan would be ready for the President-elect to sign soon after his January 20 inauguration. The adviser added, “Obviously, the sooner the better. I don't think Americans can wait.  People are suffering, our economy is sliding, and we need to act. And so our message to Congress is to work on it with all deliberate speed."

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