Stop the rich from getting richer |

Stop the rich from getting richer

Mike CockrellSilverthorne

Bush and the GOP pretend to represent the average American, the middle class. Their actions contradict the claim. Their failure to address the health care crisis leaves tens of millions without medical insurance or access to preventative medical care; funding cuts cause college tuition to rise 14 percent in 2003. (Will higher education be a privilege for only the privileged?)Bush wants to eliminate the estate tax (which affects 1.4 percent of us), and all taxes on dividends, and allow $60,000 in investment income to be sheltered annually. The only taxable income left is wages – yours. The GOP repeatedly refuses to raise the minimum wage to benefit the poorest of us. Bush gave the wealthiest 1 percent an average $59,000 tax cut; the richest 20 percent (incomes above $73,000) get 69 percent of the total tax cut. If you make $28,000 to $45,000, your 2004 tax cut is $863. The Bush deficit in years 2002-2007 places a $9,456 burden on every man, woman and child in America (data from Citizens for Tax Justice). My bet is they’re not done cutting taxes for the wealthiest Americans. The problem isn’t only Bush, as corrupt Republican legislators (with a few Democrats, the rats) march in lockstep on an economically and socially destructive course. In 2003, The Drum Major Institute, a non-partisan policy research group, did a study of how well Congress supported the middle class, issuing letter grades. Sixty-six percent of House Republicans received an F, compared to only 1 percent of Democrats. Ninety-six percent of Senate Democrats received an A, while 25 percent of Republican Senators received an F for voting against policies benefiting the middle class. The GOP pretends to represent the working class, but it’s a lie. In contrast, I know and do business with Republicans. They’re all decent, moral, hardworking people who share many of my American values. To them I ask: When are you going to take your party back? The only way to do that is to vote the extremists out, which means you’ll be voting for Democrats; I’ll understand if you do it just this once.

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