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Press Release - Forbes Can't Defend Income Tax Plan

February 02, 1996

Stung by studies which reveal that his economic plan would actually raise taxes on middle class families, GOP presidential candidate Steve Forbes today tried to divert attention away from a new Dole campaign television ad featuring New Hampshire Governor and Dole General Chairman Steve Merrill. The following is a statement by Merrill:

"The facts are clear: Under Steve Forbes' income tax plan, New Hampshire families will lose their home mortgage interest deduction and their property tax deduction. If this happens, home values will decline by as much as 24% according to a study by DRI/McGraw Hill, even if interest rates decline as Forbes promises. And under the Forbes plan, even health care benefits will be taxed.

"Study after study has demonstrated that the middle class will pay more. Steve Forbes doesn't like the study in the Union Leader? Well, how about the study by economist John Mueller which demonstrates that middle class voters earning between $ 50,000 and $ 75,000 would see their taxes rise by 10% under a Forbes-type plan. (Business Week, 12/4/95) Or the estimate by the Congressional Budget Office that home owners would pay an additional $ 2,100 in taxes every year due to the loss of the home mortgage interest deduction. (Boston Globe, 1/28/96) Or an analysis reported in the Wall Street Journal which indicated that a family with two children earning $ 50,000 per year will pay $ 1,604 more in taxes every year. ("Flat Tax Snow Job," Wall Street Journal, 1/11/96).

As TIME reported on December 4, 1995, "Despite his frequent protestations that Forbes understands the needs of the average Joe, his flat tax proposal would reward wealthy investors while leaving the burden on the middle class."

"The Concord Monitor has always supported higher taxes, even the Arneson $ 700 million income tax plan," said Merrill. "The bottom line is that New Hampshire taxpayer will suffer under Forbes' plan and that's not the kind of leadership this State needs right now."

Robert Dole, Press Release - Forbes Can't Defend Income Tax Plan Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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