The Congressional Progressive Caucus’ “Budget for All”, which would have repealed the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion, was voted down by 78–346 last week. It was formally proposed as Amendment 4 to H.Con.Res. 112; OpenCongress.org has the roll call. The House passed Paul Ryan (R-WI)’s budget instead. However, regardless of the failure of the “Budget For All”, Americans Abroad Caucus members who voted in favour of it still owe an explanation to U.S. persons abroad.
Last week, a number of Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives, including more than a third of the putative members of the Americans Abroad Caucus, co-sponsored the introduction of HR 14, the House version of the Senate “highway” bill S 1813 we discussed earlier. That bill included provisions to let the IRS revoke or deny issuance of a passport, and also to give the U.S. Treasury the authority to illegalise credit cards from banks which they feel are “uncooperative” with the U.S.’ attempts to tax the whole world.
In a comment, Just Me points to some temporary good news: instead of voting on HR 14, House Republicans instead pushed through John Mica (R-FL)’s three-month highway-funding extension bill HR 4281, the ninth extension of the Bush II-era SAFETEA-LU act.
Roger Conklin responds to markpinetree who laments that the impression that most Americans have of US citizens abroad is that they are rich tax cheats, and says, “Lets work to clarify the issues!”
Roger Conklin responded JANUARY 28, 2012 AT 9:57 PM:
Oh how I wish you were right. But the perception cards are so stacked against us that it a task of inconceivable magnitude.
Several years back one Congresman, I have forgotten his name [Bill Alexander, see below], who had always won reelection by wide margins, took up our cause. He introduced legislation to abolish citizenship based taxation and replace it with the residence based taxation of every other country. He had no support from his congressional colleagues. It became a major issue in the next election with his opponent majoring on the fact that this Congressman was wasting his time helping American tax evaders living abroad rather than working on the issues important to his constituents in the district he represented. He lost his re-election, going down in an flames. That bitter lesson did not go unnoticed by others when going to run for re-election. It is an issue that just does not resonate positively with he voting public.