Monday, August 25, 2008

Biden Has A Pro-Tax Career

For those of you who do not know, at the end of last week Presumptive Democratic Nominee Sen. Barack Obama announced that Sen. Joe Biden will be his Vice-Presidential running mate. Biden is the current chairman of the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee and actively worked on military resolutions concerning the former Yugoslavia, Georgia, and Iraq.

Many assume that Biden’s history of dealing with foreign relations and military resolutions will help ease concerns over Obama’s “lack of experience.” However, in addition to his foreign relations background Biden also has an interesting history on tax related issues. has posted this interesting article on Sen. Joe Biden’s tax history, below is a snippet from the article.

“Like most Senate Democrats in 1981, Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware found President Reagan’s tax cut proposal to be an irresistible force and voted for it, after having twice voted for efforts to limit its scope.

Since then, with a few exceptions, Biden usually has supported higher taxes, although he has voted against specific tax increases when they have been advanced by Republican presidents.

In 1981, when President Reagan was pushing for across-the-board-tax cuts, Biden twice voted for bills that would have curtailed the effect of Reagan’s proposal.

First, on July 16, 1981, he voted against a measure that called for indexing the income-tax rates to inflation beginning in 1985. In a July 17, 1981 story, The Washington Post reported that the purpose of the bill was “to offset the tax increases that otherwise occur inexorably each year as incomes rise with inflation, lifting people into higher tax brackets.”

Then, on July 23, 1981, Biden supported an amendment sponsored by Sen. Bill Bradley (D-N.J.) that would have rolled back the tax cuts for anyone making over $50,000 per year. On July 17, 1981, the New York Times explained that the purpose of this amendment was “to limit personal income-tax relief to one round of rate cuts and to tilt the relief toward those who earn less than $50,000 a year.”

Nonetheless, when the full Reagan tax cuts came up for a final vote, Biden voted in favor of them, as did 88 of his Senate colleagues. Only 11 Senators voted against the Reagan bill, including 10 Democrats and 1 Republican.

The next year, Biden cast an ironic vote against a $98.3 billion tax increase supported by President Reagan and pushed through the Senate by Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kan.). The bill passed the Senate 52-47, with 35 other Democrats joining Biden in voting against it.”

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