The House will soon vote on a new version of the “tax extenders+ bill,” which is formally labeled H.R. 4213, The American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010.
Must … not … call it … Stimulus IV.
A better name might be The Hypocrisy Act of 2010. This bill is getting far less press coverage than it deserves.
- increases infrastructure spending by $26 B over ten years;
- extends a raft of expiring tax provisions, mostly for one year
- provides funding relief for certain employer pension plans;
- raises a bunch of taxes, mostly on businesses and a certain kind of partnership income called “carried interest;”
- extends unemployment insurance benefits, increasing federal spending by $47 B over the next two years;
- increases Medicare payments for doctors through the end of 2013
for eighteen monthsat a $63 B cost;
- increases health insurance subsidies for the unemployed (through “COBRA”) by $8 B over the next two years; and
- increases federal Medicaid spending by $24 B for a six-month policy change.
CBO gives us the net budgetary effects of the bill over the 11-year period 2010-2020:
- $40 B net tax increase;
- $174 B spending increase;
- $134 B deficit increase.
I count at least four reasons this bill deserves the title The Hypocrisy Act of 2010.