Op-ed: Time for the Death Tax to R.I.P.
We are fortunate to have so many successful small businesses and family farms in Southeastern North Carolina. Many of these businesses have become an extended part of our community as they have been passed down from generation to generation. But, the longevity of these family owned and operated businesses is threatened by a sluggish economy, onerous rules and regulations, and especially the estate tax, also known as the death tax.
These family businesses are the job creators in our communities. They employ our friends and family and often provide great opportunities for young people. We need to be implementing policies that encourage stability and growth. The death tax does the exact opposite.
The death tax is a federal tax on the value of property and other assets passed on from one generation to the next at the time of a death, forcing families to make difficult decisions about how they spend their hard earned money. Do they cut back and begin to prepare for the inevitable tax or grow their business and create jobs? Unfortunately, some businesses will be forced to close their doors. Paying this tax will be especially difficult for farmers whose life work is tied to the land. North Carolina has 50,000 farms, 98 percent of which are family operated.
Furthermore, the death tax amounts to double taxation, penalizing hard-working Americans for being successful. Small businesses and our farm families already pay taxes on the money they earn. They shouldn’t be forced to pay taxes on it again when it is transferred to their heirs. Quite simply, the death tax is government theft at its worst.
That’s why I support the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2015 (H.R. 1105). In addition to voting for this bill, I am also a co-sponsor of the Death Tax Repeal Act (H.R. 173). Both bills would permanently and fully eliminate the death tax.
I will continue to fight for our small businesses and family farms. We need to create an environment where Americans can work hard, create a successful business, and pass on their legacy to the next generation without the federal government stealing part, or in many cases, all of it.