What: All Issues : Fair Taxation : Corporate Tax Breaks, General : H.R. 2. Tax Reductions/Passage of a Conference Report Containing $350 Billion in Tax Cuts That Mainly Benefit Wealthy Individuals Which Would Reduce Federal Revenue and Likely Necessitate Cuts in Domestic Spending. (2003 house Roll Call 225)
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H.R. 2. Tax Reductions/Passage of a Conference Report Containing $350 Billion in Tax Cuts That Mainly Benefit Wealthy Individuals Which Would Reduce Federal Revenue and Likely Necessitate Cuts in Domestic Spending.
house Roll Call 225     May 22, 2003
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss

When legislation passes the House and Senate in different forms, the majority and minority party leaders in both chambers of Congress select conferees from their respective bodies to participate in a conference committee to reconcile the differences between the two bills and produce a conference report (which is the final version of the legislation). The conference report is then reintroduced into the House and Senate and, if both legislative bodies pass the report, the measure is sent to the president for final approval (or a veto). The subject of this vote was final passage of a conference report which would provide $350 billion over eleven years in tax cuts. Progressives voted in opposition to the tax-cut conference report because, in their view, the bill provided an excessive amount of tax breaks for high-income individuals and not enough assistance for low and middle income taxpayers. Language contained in the conference report, for instance, would cut taxes on capital gains and dividend income and reduce the highest marginal income tax rate from 39.6% to 35% (the highest income tax rate applies only to income in excess of $1,171,000). These tax breaks, Progressives argued, would disproportionately benefit wealthy taxpayers and increase federal budget deficits in future years. Rising budget deficits, Progressives argued, would reduce the availability of funding for basic human needs such as health care, Social Security, and education. The conference report was adopted 231-200 and the measure was subsequently sent to the president for his signature.

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