October 24, 2001
Administration strongly supports House passage of H.R. 3090. The Administration
is pleased that the House has started the process of acting on a stimulus
package to help get the economy going again following the terrorist
attacks of September 11th.
The Administration is very pleased that the bill includes the main elements that the President has proposed for an economic stimulus package: (a) tax relief for low-to-moderate income individuals and families and an acceleration of scheduled tax rate cuts to spur consumer spending, improve economic growth incentives, and restore confidence; and (b) increased business expensing and repeal of the corporate Alternative Minimum Tax to create jobs and encourage capital investment.
The Administration commends the fact that this bill is focused primarily on tax relief, since Congress has already adopted adequate spending measures to address the economic disruption caused by September 11th. Over sixty billion dollars has been committed or proposed since September 11th, including monies for disaster relief, security enhancements, and defense. As part of this amount, the President has announced a Back-to-Work Relief proposal and looks forward to working in a bipartisan fashion with Congress to enact it. This is ample spending to address the direct impact of the terrorist attacks. Stimulus is best accomplished through prompt tax relief to restore consumer confidence, spur capital investment, and thus create new jobs. The Administration opposes alternative proposals that contain large spending and tax increases. Raising taxes on small businesses -- which create most new jobs -- as well as on families and individuals is ill-advised in any environment, but is particularly troubling in an already slow economy. Additional spending and tax increases will retard economic recovery rather than stimulate it.
The Administration urges quick action in the Congress to enable an economic stimulus package to take effect as quickly as possible. The Administration remains committed to working with the Congress in a bipartisan manner to produce a fiscally responsible end product consistent with the President's principles to help consumers, spur investment, and contribute to the recovery from the terrorist attacks of September 11th.
Any law that would reduce receipts or increase direct spending is subject to the pay-as-you-go requirements of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act. Accordingly, H.R. 3090, or any substitute amendment in lieu thereof that would reduce revenues or increase direct spending, will be subject to the pay-as-you-go requirement. OMB's scoring estimates are under development. The Administration will work with Congress to ensure that any unintended sequester of spending does not occur under current law or the enactment of any other proposals that meet the President's objectives.