King: Fiscal cliff chances 50-50

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Congressman concerned with direction of dependent America

After attending the Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative legislative breakfast in Estherville Friday morning, U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-Kiron) made a brief stop in Spencer to discuss the approaching fiscal cliff and his concerns about the direction of the country.

So will America fall off the cliff on Dec. 31?

Rep. Steve King

"I think right now it's more likely than it was two weeks ago. ... I'd say it's 50-50 right now," King said.

He added, "I don't believe the President fears going off the fiscal cliff and so he's going to be very difficult to negotiate with. I'd say there's an 80 or 90 percent chance they will bring some proposal to Congress and I'd say it's 50-50 if it will pass."

The fiscal cliff is linked directly to the end of the Bush-era tax cuts, which are set to expire after the final day of 2012.

"Neither the President nor the House negotiators are talking about spending cuts," King complained. "The end of the Bush tax brackets means an automatic increase in every bracket."

He continued, "I'm troubled by an estate tax increase that looms. It's going to go from a $5 million exemption and 35 percent tax rate on the balance to a $1 million exemption and 55 percent on the balance. That will destroy the transition of family businesses, that includes farms."

So where does the Congressman see things going?

"Not much is very predictable. We'll keep slugging it out until we have a deal," King said. " ... The business world is different than the political world. ... In politics there's not a lot of urgency to get things done. Because there is a deadline, because there is a cliff, they're going to have to have an agreement to bring to Congress."

Traditionally, King said the Congress dismisses the week before Christmas so legislators can return to their home districts.

"I've been told we're going to be in Washington that week. That tells me we're not going to get an agreement until that week," King said, adding, "And I don't know if it's going to pass if we do."

King pointed to two elements he believes to be key to solving America's financial challenges.

"We need a balanced budget amendment in the U.S. Constitution. There's no movement towards that," King said.

The Kiron native said he's asked, "When do we get to balance the budget?"

He provided the answer he's received: "We don't."

"Why are we negotiating the fiscal cliff when balancing the budget isn't part of the equation?" King asked rhetorically.

He also said the country needs severe spending cuts.

"This President will spend all of the money he can get his hands on. He believes the solution to our economic problem is to borrow and spend," King suggested.

But he admitted that seems to be the direction the country wants to take in light of President Barack Obama's re-election.

"It was a broad philosophical decision America made. It voted for more dependency," King said. "They want the government to do more for them with somebody else's money."

The Iowa Fourth Congressional District representative admitted that mentality will make his job tougher, but he will continue to forge ahead.

"We must go forward and push this country in the right direction. We're going to see if we can carry Iowa values to the rest of America," King said.

He added, "Part of my job over the next couple of years is to articulate a direction for this country that gets our budget to balance, pays down and off our national debt, strengthens our families and restores our work ethic."

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  • All this is talk from a man who lies more than any other person I hear from. A man who will look to make things better for himself and I stress NOT WILLING TO HELP THE MIDDLE CLASS. He's just a blow hard not willing to put Iowas needs ahead of his needs.

    -- Posted by buss22 on Sat, Dec 8, 2012, at 3:45 PM
  • Iowa's national embarrassment and biggest phony spouts off again.

    -- Posted by rarams on Sat, Dec 8, 2012, at 6:17 PM
  • Steve King, the lefties can't beat him so they bring in a carpetbagger. When that doesn't work they whine and cry and call names.

    -- Posted by Bison on Sun, Dec 9, 2012, at 4:53 AM
  • Since President Obama won reelection on a platform of increasing taxes on those who make over $250K per year, and 65% of the country approve of those increases (Quinnipiac poll), the Republicans refusal to even consider such increases seems rather pigheaded (no offense intended to pigs). I think it may be time for republicans in the legislature to decide if they are there to represent the country or Grover Norquist and his pledge.

    -- Posted by DaveMunson on Sun, Dec 9, 2012, at 9:28 AM
  • There is not one case in the whole country in its history, of the estate tax being the reason for the loss of a family farm. To continue to insinuate that and scare farm families needlessly is irresponsible at best and mean spirited at worst.

    But manufacturing threats seems to be the only way King can continue to get low information voters to keep voting for him against their own best interests.

    As far as the self made spectical of the fiscal 'curb', the people spoke in November by now twice electing a president with a majority of the popular vote both times, first time since Eisenhower. The 'debt creators' (they're obviously not job creators after 10+ years of 'encouragement') now need to accept returning to the Clinton tax rates. They can still keep the Bush tax cut on the first $250,000 earned like everyone else.

    Do you really think raising the age and cutting benefits on Medicare and SSI for those that earned and paid for those safety nets so the wealthiest can keep their 3% tax cut on $ earned over $250,000 is a good idea?

    -- Posted by helped_myself on Sun, Dec 9, 2012, at 10:21 AM
  • Do you really think raising the taxes on the rich will even come close to closing the yearly budget deficit with current spending?? For an example, go to the Forbes richest list and see how many down the list it takes if you took 100% of the net worth away from them not just tax on income. To close just 1 year of the budget deficit.

    -- Posted by clayfarmer on Sun, Dec 9, 2012, at 11:53 AM
  • "...Because there is a deadline, because there is a cliff, they're going to have to have an agreement to bring to Congress."

    CONGRESSMAN King.....aren't you using the wrong pronoun here? Why can't you and your fellow Republicans in Congress come up with an agreement or plan? You know....something other than to unsuccessfully vote to repeal Obamacare (for the 6th or 7th time).

    -- Posted by JP Greer on Sun, Dec 9, 2012, at 12:42 PM
  • Tax Revenue grows when $ is circulated. Those with the $ aren't circulating it. So the intent of collecting tax revenue is for the gov't to circulate it through gov't contracts to private employers for things such as infrastructure. The worker is hired, gets a paycheck, pays taxes. Buys gas to get to work, pays tax. As more people are working/buying gas, the gas station owner hires and orders more supplies, creating more tax revenue. Get it? No one thinks the 3% tax over $250,000 is meant to be a one time application to balance the budget.

    As far as voting to repeal Obamacare, if only it were 6 or 7 times. Try 33! Time only well spent in King's mind.

    -- Posted by helped_myself on Mon, Dec 10, 2012, at 12:23 PM
  • Helped_myself: every thing that you stated above also happens when private citizens get to spend their money as they see fit but without the fraud and misappropriation that accompany government programs.And why should the government get to tax someone during their lifetime and if they have assets to pass down, tax the assets again?

    Mr Greer, the republicans did make an offer on the fiscal cliff problem last week(12-3-12)but the president turned it down.

    -- Posted by Guy Fawkes on Mon, Dec 10, 2012, at 7:56 PM
  • @ helped, Ahh, so that's why the highest taxed states are booming. ;)

    -- Posted by clayfarmer on Mon, Dec 10, 2012, at 8:12 PM
  • We all know King is still representing the district because he has an R behind his name. It sure isn't because of anything he's actually done, unless you count naming a post office and voting against Spencer's East Beltway funding after advocating for the earmark for it.

    Here's to hoping a moderate Republican, though I'm not sure they exist anymore, challenges King in two years. That is, realistically, the only way northwest Iowa will have a viable representative in the near future, short of King retiring (which, while campaigning for his first term, he said he'd do a couple terms ago.)

    The problem is Congress needs to take action now. King will most likely be in the 50-some percent in the house that votes against at least one fiscal cliff deal. America spoke loud and clear in the elections and the Republicans still can't seem to get a clue. More of them will lose their jobs if they don't and then, maybe, they'll realize they have to do things differently than they are.

    I really want to know EVERYTHING King wants to cut. Where is he coming up with the trillions of dollars of cuts that are going to balance the budget in one full swoop? He's not. But, he wants to pretend that he is. If he truly had solutions, he would put his name on a bill and it would actually pass. We know that has historically not been the case. I'm glad he's not my representative any more (and I voted against him being your representative on Nov. 6) but I'm still represented by a Tea Party extremist for at least another two years. Sigh. Hopefully, the Republicans wake up so I can vote for one of them again.

    -- Posted by No. 3121 on Mon, Dec 10, 2012, at 10:36 PM
  • The 'Death' tax is a myth. The small percent of people that would be effected have so many ways to pass on wealth without paying the tax, that if they don't use those ways, makes me wonder how they managed to 'earn' that $ in the first place. Maybe they just inherited it too.

    If there's fraud/ineffeciences in a program, then by all means, fix them. But if you advocate the end of any program because any bit of fraud/ineffeciency is found, then put the military, all religions, private corporations, etc. on the chopping block. The conservative approach seems to be to run from the hard continuous work of solving problems and improving on worthy programs. Throw up your hands and walk away.

    As far as highest taxed states, any facts to back up that statement? I know many low tax states that have some of the lowest standards of living, health, education, etc. I hope that's not what you aspire to.

    -- Posted by helped_myself on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 9:11 AM
  • Death tax is a real concern to the people who would like to continue the family farm. The last few years have been good ones for farmers but let's say someone owns a quarter160 acres and if probate decides it's worth 15000 acre which is high but have u seen auctions lately...2.4 mil.. how many farmers have the 55% of the remaining 1.4 that's not exempted in cash to pay the liability? None

    -- Posted by hcsiowa on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 11:36 AM
  • *(^$%**) King !

    -- Posted by BRUSHPILE on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 12:23 PM
  • If Mr. King is so concerned about the estate tax then he needs to introduce legislation that extends the current rates as a separate bill. The Democrats in the Senate would pass it and the President would sign it. But he has no way to get it passed in the House by the Republicans because they would lose leverage to get the top income tax rate extended. The Senate has already passed a bill extending the tax rates for all but the top one. The House will not pass it because then the extension for the top rate would be a separate vote and the Senate would kill that or the President could veto it. So over the cliff we go!!

    -- Posted by Henry Blake on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 12:35 PM
  • There has never been a family farm lost due to the estate tax. Live in reality, not myth.

    -- Posted by helped_myself on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 2:22 PM
  • Obama's jobs czar said today that communism works, it get's things done. I'm beginning to think that many want that

    -- Posted by clayfarmer on Tue, Dec 11, 2012, at 4:00 PM
  • The reps have put two proposals out there and both have been denied by the president and the dems. One was even what president said back in July of 2011 and he said the math didn't work. Dems said they were and are going over the fiscal cliff. So lets make sure the blame is on the right ppl here. farmms will be lost if we don't save the death tax. Iowa said that the average sell of acres is 8000. With the death tax being lowered to 1 mill instead of keeping it at 5 mill, this means farmers can only hand over 120 acres to their kids. See there is a lot that goes into this kind of stuff that adds up. So here I will list it out the best that I can. Jan 1st comes, you hand over anything to a child or sell you have capital gains tax 15%, death tax(not sure percentage), 1% surplus charge due to obamacare now, investment tax(3.8%)due to obamacare, state, federal, lawyer,property tax, assesor stamp, and something else.

    Just so you also know the two things from obamacare is also subjected to you the middle class, if you go to sell your house and it is worth so much.

    So can you guys learn to quit blaming the reps here. The dems are just as out of control. They want to raise the debt ceiling=deficiet goes up. presedent wants the sole right taken from Congress to do this himself. Also your president doesn't want to sit down and actually hammer out a resolution with Boehner. And if you really think that they are going to cut taxes, you guys are foolish. Obama has already passed Bush tax cuts ones. What he will do is let this all go over the fiscal cliff and then come in as a hero and reinstated it and all will go "yeah obama". I say it's time to humble ppl and not let him reinstate the bush tax cuts. You want higher taxes like Clinton years, than let us go over the fiscal cliff and deal with Clinton years.

    -- Posted by acerdj on Wed, Dec 12, 2012, at 5:26 AM
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