President Obama’s economic stimulus package has passed its initial test in the U.S. House of Representatives. So, prepare for stimulation!
The average worker will see an additional $12 to $13 a week, thanks to lower withholding, according to an analysis by the New York Times. The unemployed will see a continuation of unemployment benefits.
Republicans want more tax cuts, and they all voted against the package, a factoid that is being headlined this morning by a media that is infatuated with political good and bad guys rather than an analysis of what’s in the bill.
The Tax Policy Center has issued a report card on all of this. It gave generally high grades to provisions that puts money in the hands of low-income people, because they’re more likely to spend it. Obama’s plan calls for a $500 tax credit for individuals and $1,000 for couples. A letter-writer in today’s Star Tribune suggests that people who make more than $105,000 should be taxed higher in Minnesota, revealing a shortfall in the calculations of how effective the package is going to be: Of the money being sent our way, how much will be siphoned by increases state, county, or city taxes and fees?
Are you thinking about buying a home? There may be some incentive coming along, CNN reports.
The cost? About $6,000 per taxpayer or $2,800 for every person in America.
Will it work? At the heart of the stimulus philosophy: No matter how you benefit, you have to spend it. Will you?