"A bridge too far" is what House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., says of the estate-tax proposal agreed to by President Obama and congressional Republicans. The measure got strong support from the National Automobile Dealers Association. Pelosi's statement may spark a battle in the House over this provision of the recent tax-cut deal.
The agreement calls for a two-year exemption for individuals leaving up to $5 million to their heirs, and couples bequeathing as much as $10 million; any assets more than that would be taxed at 35 percent.
The auto dealer lobby and other business lobbies called for this proposal, which was supported by many Republicans and accepted reluctantly by Obama as part of a deal, Pelosi recently said. Pelosi will continue to run the House until the Republicans take over in January 2011.
Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, will be replaced by Pelosi as speaker. Pelosi's assistant, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, said the estate-tax provision would cost the U.S. Treasury $68 billion over the next two years.
If an estate-tax plan isn’t approved by Congress in December 2010, the exemption will rise to $1 million for individuals on Jan. 1, 2011 with a 55 percent maximum rate on assets above that. There is no estate tax in 2010. [via autonews - sub. required]