Pence calls on Obama to extend all Bush tax cuts

Pence and other Republicans argue allowing the lower tax rates on wealthier taxpayers to expire would hurt small business owners who file their taxes as individuals. Democrats and the Obama administration say only 2 or 3 percent of the nation’s small-business owners would be affected.

Tax cuts favored by former President George W. Bush and approved by Congress in 2001 and 2003 are set to expire at the end of the year. The administration wants to extend the tax cuts for individuals making less than $200,000 per year and families with incomes below $250,000, while phasing out lower tax rates on those with incomes above those thresholds.

Separately, Obama on Wednesday will formally announce his support for a permanent research and development tax credit, and for a provision that would allow businesses to write off 100 percent of their investments in equipment and capital in 2011.

Republicans have generally supported those proposals in the past, but are warning they will oppose them now if they are paid for by raising other business taxes.

Pence also hailed House Minority Leader John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) call for a spending freeze and two-year extension of the Bush tax cuts.

“This morning John Boehner outlined essentially a two-point plan for immediate action on the economy to immediately bring legislation to the floor that would cut domestic spending back to 2008 levels and it would take action to prevent any tax increase on any American in January of next year,” Pence said.

Pence held the call to announce his support for GOP congressional candidate Andy Harris in the Maryland primary on Sept. 14.

The winner of that primary will go on to face vulnerable incumbent Democratic Rep. Frank Kravotil. Harris lost to Kratovil by a whisker in the 2008 elections.

Pence also endorsed Harris in the 2008 primary, when Harris defeated then-GOP Rep. Wayne Gilchrest.

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