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Scott Brown will soon join the Senate ... when will he join reality?

January 22, 2010 - Mike Maneval

Sen.-elect Scott Brown, R-Mass., spoke to National Review Online Friday, telling the publication's Roberta Costa, "Let’s hope President Obama takes a look at tax breaks. We’ve done everything else, from bailouts to stimulus bills, yet we haven’t had any meaningful reductions. Since what they’ve tried hasn’t worked, let’s try targeted tax breaks."

The stimulus act President Barack Obama signed included $27.3 billion in tax relief for the business community through targeted credits - I wrote about some of these provisions back in May in a post titled "The most forgotten $27.3 billion in America." It appears it isn't any better remembered today.

The 2009 stimulus act also included the Making Work Pay tax credit. Since this benefits working Americans who earn paychecks I can't be sure if that's "targeted" enough for Brown's tastes, but according to, under "some estimates, the Making Work Pay tax credit will cost the U.S. government $116.2 billion over 10 years, making it the largest tax provision in the 2009 stimulus plan."

That would bring tax relief under the stimulus signed by President Obama up to $153.5 billion, out of $787 billion - nearly 20 percent of the stimulus was tax relief. So if "what they've tried hasn't worked," then tax relief won't work, because tax relief - to the tune of $153.5 billion - is what the Obama administration tried.


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