Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Consumer Group Blasts Congressman King for Vote That Gives More Tax Cuts to the Wealthiest

Citizen Action of New York

For Immediate Release August 1, 2006

Contact: Joy Gould
518-465-4600 x 101

Consumer Group Blasts Congressman King for Vote That Gives More Tax Cuts to the Wealthiest

New report on cost of tax cuts to the wealthy tied to minimum wage hike

A new report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, House Estate Tax Proposal Has Essentially the Same Large Long-Term Cost as Earlier Version, states that a bill passed by the US House of Representatives would cost $753 billion ($599 billion plus interest costs on the debt) over the first 10 years. The study concluded that the estate tax reduction would benefit the wealthiest of the wealthy while forcing lower spending for Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, Veterans benefits, unemployment insurance and other programs that benefit low and middle income workers.

"Call it hostage-taking, blackmail, or hypocrisy on parade," said Richard Kirsch, Executive Director of Citizen Action of New York. "Just before taking off for his 5-week recess, Congressman King voted in the middle-of-the-night for a bill the US House leadership put together to tie a long overdue minimum wage increase to hundreds of billions of tax cuts for multi-millionaires."

CBPP reports that millions of Americans will be harmed from the House bill because the $733 billion hit to the federal budget will result in cuts in programs like college tuition assistance and an increase in the federal budget deficit.

"Since Congressman King voted to raise his own pay on a stand-alone up or down vote, surely minimum wage earners deserve the same. It's political blackmail to claim the only way that minimum wage workers can get a raise is to give tax giveaways to the richest of the rich."

Now this cynical ploy is headed to the Senate - where a vote is expected to occur before the Senate is scheduled to recess at the end of this week.

E. Joyce Gould, RN, MSN
Health Care Project Director
Citizen Action of New York
Public Policy and Education Fund of New York
94 Central Avenue
Albany, NY 12206
518-465-4600 x 101
518-465-2890 (fax)


Anonymous said...

The one problem with minimum wage, the one issue that no one seems to see involves the business. Any person who should refer to himself as a "business person" knows that you need the most workers for the lowest cost possible. With an increase in the minimum wage, businesses across the country will have to let go of some of their workers because they cannot afford to pay every salary. And of course once that happens the Democrats will complain that the unemployment rate is too high, then more money would need to be provided for people who are unemployed, and the Democrats would tax Americans in order to pay off benefits to the unemployed. Even if a business can afford the new minimum wage, leave it to them to raise the prices of their goods to make up the difference which will not and should not bode well with any American. I say leave it up to the states. It's better if they fix their own minimum wage laws. It's easy if Connecticut fixes this problem in state rather than allowing Congress to address every single problem that occurs in the 50 states. There is such a thing as a relationship between the federal and state, and it seems that we have come to the point in our history that places all burdens on the federal government. This was not the founders' intentions, and I wouldn't be surprised if they are turning in their graves in respect to how the nation's power has been concentrated more on the federal level rather than shared equally with the states.

Anonymous said...

Increasing the minimum wage may casue a very temporary minor increase in unemployment, but in the long run, our economy will benefit from higher wages.

Where is the burden on the federal government by increasing the minimum wage? Other than an increase salaries from the higher wage. This will not cost the federal government any more than every other state, municipality, and business in the country.

This is only a mandated minimum wage, not a social program.

Anonymous said...

The problem involving the federal government does not stem from the cost, but rather the setbacks caused by this surge in the minimum wage rate as well as an inevitable decrease in employment. The states can better handle their own minimum wage increases, because they frankly have less people to deal with than the federal government does.
I also reiterate the argument that with higher wages comes higher priced goods. Businesses around the country cannot maintain the same profit without balancing it out with something else, and, this "something else" in this case is what goods or services they provide.
Another problem with raising the minimum wage rate stems from the fact that the cost of living in, let's say West Virginia is not even comparable to the cost of living in New York. Luckily those workers in NY have seen the minimum wage go beyond the federal level. By enacting a new national minimum wage you are putting Mississippi, Alabama, and West Virginia on the same economic capacity as California, Massachusetts, and New York. This argument goes back to the one previously made allowing states to decide their own minimum wage. Who knows about the cost of living in a certain state better than that particular state.