In Conference Call, Team Obama says their candidate will not raise taxes on any family making less than $250,000 -- Adds that John McCain "can't make the same pledge."
Missouri State Auditor Susan Montee and Obama’s National Economic Advisor Brian Deese unveil Missouri "Truth Squad on Taxes"
G.O.P's ICET RESPONDS
UPDATED BELOW: OBAMA SPOKESPERSON RESPONDS TO ICET
A top Obama national economic adviser told reporters Monday that the choice on taxes between John McCain and Barack Obama is simple, but stark: Obama won't raise taxes on any family making less than $250,000 and McCain "cannot make that same pledge."
Republican House Budget Chairman Allen Icet responded by noting that Obama's plan to raise capital gain taxes impacts everyone. "If an increase in capital gains were to be passed . . . it would be about $200 million plus less than we'd receive otherwise," Icet said. He added that of the $8.8 billion dollars Missouri receives in general revenue, ten percent is associated with capital gains. "By increasing the capital gains taxes, people won't turn stocks over as normal as they would," Icet said.
Obama economic adviser Brian Deese called McCain's tax plan "totally, completely unaffordable." Deese added that McCain's plan leaves out millions of middle class families. "Don't take our word for it," Deese added, noting that conservative groups like The Heritage Foundation, National Review, and The Tax Foundation have all criticized McCain's plan. Icet said that he has not read Obama's plan in detail, but has focused on the capital gains tax.
Missouri State Auditor Susan Montee said that Obama's plan "cuts more taxes for more people," including "95% of Missouri workers." "What he's saying about Senator Obama's tax plans are just plain lies. These distortions can't keep going without being answered," Montee said. Deese also noted that McCain's plan would "tax health benefits of workers" for the first time in American history. Icet said he does not believe McCain's intent is to raise taxes. He said McCain's plan is designed to allow more Americans to receive healthcare coverage.
The two camps views on the state of the economy were also quite different. Montee called McCain "out of touch" for thinking that the economy has made great progress under President Bush. She noted that Missourians have seen 163 percent increase in gas prices and that in 2008, Missouri has lost 19,000 jobs. Icet said that general revenues remain on target, and "that reflects the economic health of the state." "The state of the economy is doing well," Icet said.
***UPDATED 10:42 P.M. . . "Today, when Republican Allen Icet repeated John McCain's claim that the "state of the economy is doing well", we confirmed that the Missouri GOP is just as out of touch with the needs of everyday people as its Presidential nominee," said Obama Regional Press Secretary Jean Weinberg. "After we reaffirmed that Senator Obama will cut taxes for 95% of Missouri's families and that John McCain couldn't make the same claim, how did Missouri Republicans respond? By avoiding the truth--that McCain's tax plan will leave 72% of Missouri families behind," Weinberg added.