Hatch Dispatch: The Fiscal Cliff

Senator Orrin Hatch
2012-12-21 16:47:07
My fellow Utahn: With the holidays here and as you spend time with friends and family, I wanted to send you an update of where things stand with the so-called fiscal cliff – a series of tax increases and spending cuts that are set to take place on January 1st. Why are we in this situation? Over ten years ago, the President with bipartisan support from Congress passed significant tax relief to spur long-term economic growth, increase Americans’ paychecks, and spur investment. These tax bills were unfortunately written to expire after ten years. Two years ago, President Obama agreed that our economy remained too weak to allow ANY of these taxes to go up and a continuation of all these tax policies were enacted for two more years. That brings us to today. For months now, I have been trying to chart a reasonable path ahead to stop these massive tax increases. Unfortunately, after his reelection, the President has been intransigent and seems unwilling or unable to work with Republicans to find a reasonable solution. You may have heard the President say that all he wants is to raise taxes on so-called millionaires. That’s all he wants. That this is how we’ll tackle our debt. The fact is that with our debt soaring towards $17 TRILLION, raising those taxes would cover about seven days of federal spending. When I and many of my colleagues have asked for the President to consider reforming government as a means of our supporting more revenue, the President has flatly said no. The bottom line is that he’s moved the goal posts – he wants more and more of the American people’s tax dollars to support his spending without enacting any reforms that would curb our skyrocketing debt. That’s not right and it isn’t a real solution. I’m also hesitant to raise taxes even on the so-called wealthy. Not because I give a hoot about the rich – they can hire lawyers and accountants – what I’m worried about is the nearly million small businesses who would be impacted by these very tax increases. As your voice in Washington, I’ve heard from countless Utahns who are right when they say that America has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. But the fact is that if Washington does not act by January 1, 2013 – every single American will see a massive tax hike. Everyone. That isn’t right. So where do things stand? Next week, the Senate will return to try to find a reasonable path forward to protect as many Americans as possible. As the lead Republican on the Finance Committee, the committee in charge of tax policy, I will not stop working to try and find a way to avert the cliff. But the recently re-elected President has an obligation to lead. He is the Commander-in-Chief and it’s time he started acting as such. We cannot take no for an answer – too much is at stake. I know this is frustrating to many of you – it should be. You work hard, take care of your families, and pay your bills. Why can’t Washington do the right thing? My pledge to you is that I will do everything to stop this fiscal cliff before the end of the year. Finally, I hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year. Sincerely, Senator Orrin Hatch

My fellow Utahn:

With the holidays here and as you spend time with friends and family, I wanted to send you an update of where things stand with the so-called fiscal cliff – a series of tax increases and spending cuts that are set to take place on January 1 st.

Why are we in this situation?  Over ten years ago, the President with bipartisan support from Congress passed significant tax relief to spur long-term economic growth, increase Americans’ paychecks, and spur investment.  These tax bills were unfortunately written to expire after ten years.  Two years ago, President Obama agreed that our economy remained too weak to allow ANY of these taxes to go up and a continuation of all these tax policies were enacted for two more years. 

That brings us to today.  For months now, I have been trying to chart a reasonable path ahead to stop these massive tax increases.  Unfortunately, after his reelection, the President has been intransigent and seems unwilling or unable to work with Republicans to find a reasonable solution. 

You may have heard the President say that all he wants is to raise taxes on so-called millionaires.  That’s all he wants.  That this is how we’ll tackle our debt.  The fact is that with our debt soaring towards $17 TRILLION, raising those taxes would cover about seven days of federal spending.  When I and many of my colleagues have asked for the President to consider reforming government as a means of our supporting more revenue, the President has flatly said no.  The bottom line is that he’s moved the goal posts – he wants more and more of the American people’s tax dollars to support his spending without enacting any reforms that would curb our skyrocketing debt.  That’s not right and it isn’t a real solution. 

I’m also hesitant to raise taxes even on the so-called wealthy.  Not because I give a hoot about the rich – they can hire lawyers and accountants – what I’m worried about is the nearly million small businesses who would be impacted by these very tax increases. 

As your voice in Washington, I’ve heard from countless Utahns who are right when they say that America has a spending problem, not a revenue problem.  But the fact is that if Washington does not act by January 1, 2013 – every single American will see a massive tax hike.  Everyone.  That isn’t right. 

So where do things stand?  Next week, the Senate will return to try to find a reasonable path forward to protect as many Americans as possible.  As the lead Republican on the Finance Committee, the committee in charge of tax policy, I will not stop working to try and find a way to avert the cliff. 

But the recently re-elected President has an obligation to lead.  He is the Commander-in-Chief and it’s time he started acting as such.  We cannot take no for an answer – too much is at stake. 

I know this is frustrating to many of you – it should be.  You work hard, take care of your families, and pay your bills.  Why can’t Washington do the right thing?  My pledge to you is that I will do everything to stop this fiscal cliff before the end of the year. 

Finally, I hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year.

Sincerely,

Senator Orrin Hatch

 
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Senator Orrin Hatch
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