Claire McCaskill on Taxes

Last Updated : Oct 17, 2012

Summary

Senator McCaskill supports extending the Bush tax cuts for everyone making less than a million dollars a year. He has made remarks that assert that tax credits are equivalent to the government spending money as it is not taking in the full amount it is entitled to from any given entity. She noted charitable given, oil and gas, and real estate as areas where these breaks are given.

The Bush Tax Cuts

In February of 2007, Senator McCaskill supported the Middle Class Opportunity Act of 2007, which would extend the Bush tax cuts for everyone except the highest earners. She stated that the middle class is the real engine that drives our economy and it was time to reroute those tax cuts to give the middle class a break in a way that helps fuel our economy for all Americans.

In 2010, Senator McCaskill supported extending the tax cuts for all Americans on their first million dollars in income. She then stated that for all Americans with incomes above a million, we need to just say no in an effort to fight for the middle class and deficit reduction

Tax Credits

As part of legislation in 2011 to end tax cuts for oil companies, Senator McCaskill stated that there were two ways to spend money in Washington: one, through the appropriations process; the other is through tax goodies. She then stated that these goodies are called tax expenditures, and that Congress tells entities who successfully lobby Congress they are not going to have to pay all of their taxes. She refered to this as denying the Treasury money.

She continued by stating that many of those special deals are done because the case is made that they spur economic development or they spur some kind of activity in our country that we think is desirable. She noted the examples of interest deduction on people's homes as special deal for the real estate lobby, charitable giving as another give away, and the oil and gas industry as another industry.

 

Middle Class Opportunity Act of 2007

In February of 2007, Senator McCaskill released a press statement noting her support for legislation known as the Middle Class Opportunity Act of 2007.

 

2010 Bush Tax Cut Compromise

In December of 2010, Senator McCastill released a press statement noting her support for ending the tax cuts for the wealthy.

 

Offshore Production and Safety Act

In May of 2011, Senator McCaskill spoke on the Senate floor on the subject of repealing tax subsidies for oil companies as part of the Offshore Production and Safety Act of 2011.

Voting Record

Continue Bush Tax Cuts for all Except top Earners

On July 25, 2012 the Senate voted on legislation to extend all of the Bush tax cuts with the exception of those earning more than $200,000 or couples earning more than $250,000. The measure passed 51-48 along mostly party lines. It was largely symbolic as tax bills are not legal unless they originate in the House. Claire McCaskill voted in favor extending the Bush Tax Cuts for all except the highest earners.

Claire McCaskill voted in favor extending the Bush Tax Cuts for all except the highest earners.

Continue All Bush Tax Cuts

On July 25, 2012 the Senate voted on an amendment to legislation to extend all of the Bush tax cuts. The measure failed 45-54 along mostly party lines. It was largely symbolic as tax bills are not legal unless they originate in the House. Claire McCaskill voted against extending all Bush Tax cuts.

Claire McCaskill voted against extending all Bush Tax cuts.

The Alternative Minimum Tax

The alternative minimum tax was created to ensure that a few of the richest Americans did not exploit loopholes to avoid paying any taxes. It was never intended to be a method of taxing the general population. Unfortunately, the amount that a person earns before the tax goes into effect was not indexed to inflation. Therefore, each year Congress must enact a "fix" to adjust the amount. Occasionally, a larger increase is proposed than inflation adjustment. Income from the tax was accounted for in the 2009 budget. According to the rules of PAYGO (Pay As You Go), a decrease in the amount of money taken in must be offset by a reduction in spending. This amendment sought to exempt the AMT from that rule, to more accurately reflect the purpose of the tax. The amendment failed with most Republicans supporting it and most Democrats opposing it in a 47-51 vote. Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to exempt the AMT from PAYGO rules.

Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to exempt the AMT from PAYGO rules.

The Estate Tax

The estate tax is a tax levied on the assets or estates of wealthy individuals when they pass away. The tax collects a percentage of the estates which are valued above a given amount. This amendment sought to raise the value of the estates affected from $1 Million to $5 Million, and to lower the maximum rate at which the estate can be taxed from 45% to 35%. The argument for the change was that many small farms now fell under this tax. The opposition stated that not enough revenue would be collected is the amount was raised, as the tax would affect only 0.2% of estates instead of 0.5% under the current limits. The amendment failed in a 50-50 vote with most Republicans supporting the amendment and most Democrats opposing it. Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to raise the value of the estates affected to $5 Million and to lower the maximum rate to 35%.

Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to raise the value of the estates affected to $5 Million and to lower the maximum rate to 35%.

The Estate Tax

In 2007, an amendment was proposed which would have raised the value of applicable estates to $5 Million and set the maximum rate at 35%. This amendment would have also made the 2006 extended rates for capital gains and dividends permanent. The amendment was supported by most Republicans and opposed by most Democrats and failed in a 47-51 vote. Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to raise the value of applicable estates to $5 Million and set the maximum rate at 35%.

Claire McCaskill voted against the amendment to raise the value of applicable estates to $5 Million and set the maximum rate at 35%.

Full Repeal of AMT

In 2007, congress made and attempt to repeal the alternative minimum tax (AMT) completely. The legislation was defeated in a 44-53 vote with most Republicans supporting the legislation and most Democrats opposing it. Claire McCaskill voted against repealing the AMT.

Claire McCaskill voted against repealing the AMT.

 

Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-111; Bill Number-S 506; Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act - Cosponsor

Amends Internal Revenue Code provisions relating to tax shelter activities to: (1) establish legal presumptions against the validity of transactions involving offshore secrecy jurisdictions (i.e., foreign tax havens identified in this Act and by the Secretary of the Treasury); (2) impose restrictions on foreign jurisdictions, financial institutions, or international transactions that are of primary money laundering concern or that impede U.S. tax enforcement; (3) treat certain foreign corporations managed and controlled primarily in the United States as domestic corporations; (4) increase the period for Internal Revenue Service (IRS) review of tax returns involving offshore secrecy jurisdictions; (5) require tax withholding agents and financial institutions to report certain information about beneficial owners of foreign-owned financial accounts and accounts established in offshore secrecy jurisdictions; (6) disallow tax advisor opinions validating transactions in offshore secrecy jurisdictions; (7) subject dividend equivalents and substitute dividends to the 30% tax on foreign income; and (8) impose reporting requirements for transactions involving a passive foreign investment company.

Session-111; Bill Number-S 181; Permanent Marriage Penalty Relief Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

Makes provisions of the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 that eliminate the marriage penalty in the standard deduction, the 15-percent tax bracket, and the earned income tax credit, permanent.

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