What: All Issues : Making Government Work for Everyone, Not Just the Rich or Powerful : Insuring Government Has Adequate Financing to Function : S. 1054. Tax Reductions/Procedural Vote to Defeat an Amendment Designed to Reduce Taxes on Social Security Benefits and Restore the Dividends Tax. (2003 senate Roll Call 149)
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S. 1054. Tax Reductions/Procedural Vote to Defeat an Amendment Designed to Reduce Taxes on Social Security Benefits and Restore the Dividends Tax.
senate Roll Call 149     May 15, 2003
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Loss

During the Senate's consideration of legislation to reduce taxes-which, as budget-related legislation, was governed by the reconciliation process outlined in the 1974 Budget Act-Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) proposed an amendment to repeal a 1993 tax increase on Social Security benefits. To offset revenue losses to the Treasury, the Dorgan measure would have reinstated the dividends tax and reversed the rate reductions for high income taxpayers included in the underlying legislation. Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) raised a point of order against the Dorgan amendment on the grounds that it was not relevant to the tax cut bill (under reconciliation rules, amendments must be "germane", or relevant, to the pending legislation). The subject of this vote is a Dorgan motion to waive Grassley's point of order, a motion which requires a 60- vote majority for passage. Progressives supported Dorgan's amendment and voted in favor of his motion because, in their view, tax reductions should be geared toward low and middle income taxpayers (a vast majority of whom pay taxes on their Social Security benefits) rather than high income taxpayers (who disproportionately benefit from eliminating the dividends tax). The Dorgan proposal failed to attract the necessary sixty votes and was defeated 49-51.

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