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American Taxpayers to Congress on Stimulus 2: Don't Squander Our Money on More Government Spending
September 9, 2008
Dear Member of Congress:
On behalf of the millions of tax-paying Americans represented by the groups signed below, we urge you to reject a massive increase in government spending disingenuously disguised with a "Stimulus 2" moniker. Congress should cut taxes and cut spending instead if it wants to stimulate the economy.
Although the price tag for a new spending package will undoubtedly spiral upward as the House and Senate ping-pong the legislation between themselves, Senator Robert Byrd made an "opening bid" of $24.1 billion for such a plan before Congress recessed in August. Not to be outdone, Congressional Quarterly news reports describe House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's commitment for new spending as "at least $50 billion." Taxpayers cringe at the thought of a Senate counter-offer.
Proponents will argue that a Stimulus 2 will direct money into infrastructure, housing, disaster recovery, and energy assistance -- supposedly "neglected" areas. We beg to differ.
According to the National Taxpayers Union Foundation's VoteTally program, which tracks Congressional votes affecting the level of federal outlays, Congress adopted legislation to increase spending above the baseline in these areas by $99 billion between 2001 and 2006.
*Changes in outlays relative to appropriate baseline.
Government doesn't create wealth; it either redistributes it or destroys it. Our members understand that shifting money from individuals to government programs (many with questionable performance records) will not "stimulate" sustainable economic growth.
In early 2008, many of our organizations pointed out in an open letter that if "Congress seeks true stimulus that is economically sound, it ought to reduce tax rates ... ." That suggestion remains as true today as it did earlier this year. Low tax rates on hard work and investment will do much more over the short and long term to expand prosperity in America. Reject calls for higher federal spending.
Mark Alan Zelden
Matthew J. Brouillette
Susan W. Gore
Kurt E. Hahn
Michael Dyer, Kauai County Coordinator
Mark R. Spengler, Kailua Coordinator
Roy H. Stewart