Obama: The quickest and broadest tax cut ever

Two important takeaways from the President’s Weekly Address this morning.

#1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will start having an impact as soon as a few weeks from now, in the form of the quickest and broadest tax cut in history:

“Because of what we did, 95% of all working families will get a tax cut — in keeping with a promise I made on the campaign. And I’m pleased to announce that this morning, the Treasury Department began directing employers to reduce the amount of taxes withheld from paychecks — meaning that by April 1st, a typical family will begin taking home at least $65 more every month. Never before in our history has a tax cut taken effect faster or gone to so many hardworking Americans.”

#2, once the economy has recovered and we’ve laid the groundwork for a sustainable future, the President is committed to taking on the massive deficits we inherited:

“That work begins on Monday, when I will convene a fiscal summit of independent experts and unions, advocacy groups and members of Congress to discuss how we can cut the trillion-dollar deficit that we’ve inherited. On Tuesday, I will speak to the nation about our urgent national priorities, and on Thursday, I’ll release a budget that’s sober in its assessments, honest in its accounting, and that lays out in detail my strategy for investing in what we need, cutting what we don’t, and restoring fiscal discipline.”

Watch the full address or read the text on the flip.

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SATURDAY, February 21, 2009
WEEKLY ADDRESS BY THE PRESIDENT
TO THE NATION

     THE PRESIDENT:  Earlier this week, I signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act — the most sweeping economic recovery plan in history.  Because of this plan, 3.5 million Americans will now go to work doing the work that America needs done.

     I’m grateful to Congress, governors and mayors across the country, and to all of you whose support made this critical step possible.

     Because of what we did together, there will now be shovels in the ground, cranes in the air, and workers rebuilding our crumbling roads and bridges, and repairing our faulty levees and dams.

     Because of what we did, companies — large and small — that produce renewable energy can now apply for loan guarantees and tax credits and find ways to grow, instead of laying people off; and families can lower their energy bills by weatherizing their homes.

     Because of what we did, our children can now graduate from 21st century schools and millions more can do what was unaffordable just last week — and get their college degree.

     Because of what we did, lives will be saved and health care costs will be cut with new computerized medical records.

     Because of what we did, there will now be police on the beat, firefighters on the job, and teachers preparing lesson plans who thought they would not be able to continue pursuing their critical missions.  And ensure that all of this is done with an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability, I have assigned a team of managers to make sure that precious tax dollars are invested wisely and well.

     Because of what we did, 95 percent of all working families will get a tax cut — in keeping with a promise I made on the campaign.  And I’m pleased to announce that this morning, the Treasury Department began directing employers to reduce the amount of taxes withheld from paychecks — meaning that by April 1st, a typical family will begin taking home at least $65 more every month.  Never before in our history has a tax cut taken effect faster or gone to so many hardworking Americans.

     But as important as it was that I was able to sign this plan into law, it is only a first step on the road to economic recovery.  And we can’t fail to complete the journey.  That will require stemming the spread of foreclosures and falling home values, and doing all we can to help responsible homeowners stay in their homes, which is exactly what the housing plan I announced last week will help us do.

     It will require stabilizing and repairing our banking system, and getting credit flowing again to families and businesses.  It will require reforming the broken regulatory system that made this crisis possible, and recognizing that it’s only by setting and enforcing 21st century rules of the road that we can build a thriving economy.

     And it will require doing all we can to get exploding deficits under control as our economy begins to recover.  That work begins on Monday, when I will convene a fiscal summit of independent experts and unions, advocacy groups and members of Congress, to discuss how we can cut the trillion-dollar deficit that we’ve inherited.  On Tuesday, I will speak to the nation about our urgent national priorities.  And on Thursday, I’ll release a budget that’s sober in its assessments, honest in its accounting, and lays out in detail my strategy for investing in what we need, cutting what we don’t, and restoring fiscal discipline.

     No single piece of this broad economic recovery can, by itself, meet the demands that have been placed on us.  We can’t help people find work or pay their bills unless we unlock credit for families and businesses.  We can’t solve our housing crisis unless we help people find work so that they can make payments on their homes.  We can’t produce shared prosperity without firm rules of the road, and we can’t generate sustained growth without getting our deficits under control.  In short, we cannot successfully address any of our problems without addressing them all.  And that is exactly what the strategy we are pursuing is designed to do.

     None of this will be easy.  The road ahead will be long and full of hazards.  But I am confident that we, as a people, have the strength and wisdom to carry out this strategy and overcome this crisis.  And if we do, our economy — and our country — will be better and stronger for it. Thank you.

  8 comments for “Obama: The quickest and broadest tax cut ever

  1. Jubal
    February 21, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    You Dems — giving money to people who don’t pay taxes isn’t a tax cut. It’s welfare.

    Has the English language lost all meaning for the Humpty Dumpty Party?

  2. RHackett
    February 21, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    These are the types of drastic actions necessary when the previous President gave away a budget surplus and enacted a $1.35T tax cut then tried to support to military conflicts.

    Please spare us the lecture on fiscal policy.

    The GOP demolished any credibility on that issue for at least the next generation.

  3. Paul
    February 21, 2009 at 10:27 pm

    Matt,
    do you know how much Eric Prince has paid in taxes? How about KBR or Haliburton in corporate taxes? Do you have those figures?

  4. RHackett
    February 22, 2009 at 3:35 am

    Don’t stop there Paul. How about:

    AAI Corporation
    BAE Systems Inc.
    Boeing
    Carlyle Group
    Colt’s Manufacturing Company
    General Atomics
    General Electric
    General Dynamics
    Honeywell
    Lockheed-Martin
    Northrop Grumman Corporation
    Raytheon Corporation
    United Technologies

  5. February 22, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    Matt –
    I’m still waiting for Reagan’s tax cuts to trickle down? Its a tax cut, which you are only in favor of if a Republican preaches if but not if a Democrat does it. Kind of like how Bill Clinton actually shrunk the size of the federal government while W grew it faster than anything even LBJ dreamed of.

    Keep preaching that Republicans are the party of small government, limited government instrusion and tax cuts. None of it is true. The Yacht Party is the borrow and spend party.

  6. Lil Truth
    February 22, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    What we need are realistic balanced budgets. The hangover from overspending is too high as we are seeing now, here in California.
    Tax cuts are great, but based on unrealistic and unsustainable, along with an increase in welfare to those who do not produce, is a very unrealistic way to try to increase productivity in the general population. Fact is, the current spending package isn’t being well received by the markets, nor most small privately held business.
    We will see how well it works. No, the Republicans by and large are not playing along with it, so it’s all on the Dems, your plan, your bill, your responsibility.
    BTW, does anyone remember their Civics class? Congress passes all spending bills, not the Executive branch. Right now the Executive and Legislature don’t seem to be cooperating very well either, at least from the back chatter. Nancy & Harry don’t seem to want to let the new guy take all the credit or steer the ship.

  7. Jubal
    February 22, 2009 at 10:44 pm

    Again – giving money to people who don’t pay taxes isn’t a tax cut.

    Not a single lefty has been able to refute that obvious statement of reality — just besides the point hectoring.

    It is another sign of the intellectual bankruptcy of the Left that they feel they cannot sell their redistributive policies unless they co-opt the language of the Right.

    But hey — don;t let the plain meaning of the English language constrain the selling of government redistribution of the wealth.

  8. Mike DeFreitas
    February 23, 2009 at 1:28 am

    Everyone pays some sort of tax. It’s just unfortunate that some of us are limited in income and only get a chance to pay the very highly regressive type.

Comments are closed.