by David A. Love, The Grio
President Obama has reached a compromise with Republicans in Congress to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans for two years, in exchange for a 13-month extension of unemployment benefits. The question is whether Obama’s deal on taxes is the lesser of two evils, and whether this will be a good thing for black America.
These are the highlights of the plan, which will add $900 billion to the nation’s deficit:
13-month extension of unemployment benefits ($56 billion)
Middle-class tax cuts for people making under $250,000 ($300 billion)
2-year extension of tax cuts for the rich, reduction in estate tax ($130 billion)
2 percent payroll tax cut/tax holiday ($120 billion)
Obama tax credits, including the child tax credit, earned income tax credit, and college tuition credit ($40 billion)
Obama tax cuts for business ($30-180 billion)
The plan contains a combination of things that both Republicans and Democrats like. Democrats are champions of unemployment benefits for millions of suffering people, which tend to stimulate the economy far more than tax cuts. However, these stimulative measures, essentially giving money to the unemployed to spend, are a small, though important, part of this package.