Oklahoma Senators Vote Against Amendments to Tax Package

Friday, June 6th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

The U.S. Senate voted 94-2 Thursday in favor of the tax package, which expands the child credit for low-income workers and high-income married couples.

Oklahoma Senators Jim Inhofe and Don Nickles cast the only two votes against the proposed amendments.

25 million middle-income households are already qualified to get an advance refund of the child tax credit, temporarily increased to $1,000.

Pending the expected approval of President Bush, the new amendments will affect about 6.5 million families who make between $10,500 and $27,000. Those families will now be eligible for a bigger child tax credit.

The recent debate saw Republicans argue that this low-income group already gets all of their income taxes, and much of their payroll taxes, refunded through the earned income tax credit.

Republican opponents of the proposed amendments point out that there is no logic in giving a credit to citizens who don’t actually pay anything. Democrats accused Republicans of favoring the wealthy over the poor.

The bill allows low-income families to get a refund worth 15 percent of their income in excess of $10,500. A full-time worker making minimum wage earns $10,300 a year.

The amendment also addresses a priority issue for the Republicans, increasing the amount married couples can earn before the credit starts to decrease (commonly known as the “Marriage Penalty”).

For more detailed information about the new tax laws, click here to link to the IRS web site.