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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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ELCA bishops: Reconsider tax cuts

Religious leaders asked Congress to reconsider President Bush's $1.35 trillion tax cut. ELCA Presiding Bishop H. George Anderson and 36 synod bishops signed a letter spearheaded by the Religious Community for Responsible Tax Policy, which says the cut "is too inequitable, too large and threatens the well-being of our nation." 

More than 600 Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Orthodox leaders signed the letter, which also calls for increasing the child tax credit and expanding the earned income tax credit to benefit needy families.

The letter says: "As millions of people--parents and children, the elderly, people with disabilities and the working poor--are driven to seek charity to meet their most basic needs, we are appalled that the focus of attention ... is not on meeting their needs; rather on tax cuts that will mostly benefit the wealthy."

If projected revenue surpluses don't materialize to pay for the tax cut, the letter says, spending for public education, Social Security, economic development, Medicare and poverty programs would suffer deep cuts for a decade or more

Despite these concerns, Congress passed the bill. At presstime Bush was expected to sign the bill.


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