The President. I am honored to be here, Carole. Thank you very much. Next time my mother shops, I am going to tell her to double the amount of purchases. [Laughter] I want to thank the other smallbusiness owners who are here, as well.
One of the unique things about America is the entrepreneurial spirit of our country. The small-business owner is really the backbone of the Nation in terms of job creation, in terms of hope, in terms of offering dreams for people. I am here to talk to these entrepreneurs about the benefits of the tax relief package, the benefits for the small-business owner.
First, we'll make the code simpler, consolidate the rates from five to four. By dropping the top rate from nearly 40 percent to 33 percent, we really say to the sole proprietor, the business owner, that there is more capital available for you to expand your business if need be, your own money in your own pocket to be able to make sure your small business flourishes. I strongly believe and know that cuts in marginal rates will affect capital growth, which is so important for the growth of small businesses in America.
Secondly, the tax relief package will help the consumers, the customers of the smallbusiness owner. We have an issue in America right now called energy, and the energy prices are beginning to affect the purchasing patterns of the people who come to the shops such as this one. Many of the Americans have got a consumer debt load that is significant, and it is important for us to provide meaningful tax relief for all taxpayers so that they can better manage their own personal accounts.
There is a lot of talk about paying down debt, and my budget that I will submit to the Congress does pay down the national debt. But by cutting taxes on everybody who pays taxes, by recognizing a family of four earning $50,000 a year will receive a $2,000 tax cut, it helps people get out from underneath their own personal debt load. And that's important. It's important for the families; it's important for the smallbusiness owners.
And finally, as Carole mentioned, part of our tax plan eliminates the death tax. Small-business owners work hard to have a financial platform from which they can not only live but also a financial platform that they can pass on to their heirs. And the death tax is unfair. The death tax is a tax that unfairly penalizes people who have worked hard to build up their own businesses.
So this tax relief package is not only good for taxpayers; it is also good to stimulate and to help the entrepreneurial spirit in America, a spirit seen right here with these good folks who have taken risk, are creating jobs, but most importantly, realized their dreams of owning their own business. So it's such an honor to be here. I appreciate your inviting us. Thank you all for your hospitality. I'll be glad to answer a few questions.
David [David Gregory, NBC News].
Patients' Bill of Rights
Q. Mr. President, can you explain your position on a patients' bill of rights, as proposed today in the Senate? Are you for it, as it was outlined by Senators Kennedy and McCain and others?
The President. Well, I haven't seen all the details. But first, I am pleased that Senator Kennedy and Senator McCain have come together to offer a plan. Inherent in their plan, as I understand, is some tort reform. That is a really important ingredient in order to move patients' bill of rights, as far as I'm concerned. We ...
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