Cline and the “death tax”scam

In his latest report to constituents, Congressman Cline wrote that he is co-sponsoring a number of bills.

One of these bills, the Death Tax Repeal Act, is a bill which would benefit farmers and ranchers across the Sixth Congressional District. The men and women who raise our cattle, plant our crops, and feed America know how harmful the death tax has been to families in the agriculture industry. A repeal of this tax allows our working farm families to maintain their small businesses across generations.

“Death tax” is what Republicans like Cline call the federal estate tax. It’s an invented phrase designed to make it sound especially awful. But according to the Tax Policy Center:

[O]nly about 80 small farms and closely held businesses—estates with farm and business assets totaling no more than $5 million and making up at least half of the gross estate—paid any estate tax in 2017. Small farms and businesses will not be subject to the estate tax in 2018 because of the $11.2 million effective exemption under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The higher exemption amount expires after 2025.

The chances that this tax would affect any family farmers, ranchers or small business owners in the Sixth Congressional District of Virginia are next to nil.

Congressman Cline should devote his legislative efforts to issues of more direct concern to the people he represents.

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