State’s bishops call for tax bill to protect vulnerable, families

| December 18, 2017 | 1 Comment

The Minnesota Catholic Conference asked the state’s congressional delegation to support that tax bill only if it “meets key moral considerations,” including policies that would not increase the tax burden on people with low incomes or working families.

“Policy that is good for workers, families who welcome life, families who are struggling to reach (or stay in) the middle class and the very poor, has by design been a part of our tax code for years,” said Archbishop Bernard Hebda of St. Paul and Minneapolis in a Dec. 12 statement. “Any modifications to these important priorities should be made only with a clear understanding and concern for the people who may least be able to bear the negative consequences of new policy.”

MCC added its support to a Dec. 6 letter to Congress by Bishop Frank Dewane of Venice, Florida,  chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Social Development. The House of Representatives and Senate are expected to vote on the final tax plan early this week.

“The House and Senate tax plans, while premised on the hope of long-term job and economic growth, disproportionately benefit businesses and wealthy Americans instead of working families,” said Jason Adkins, MCC executive director, in the statement. “Tax policy should serve the common good and create shared prosperity, not just the hope that long-term economic growth will eventually create jobs, or that corporate profits will eventually redound to the benefit of workers.”

According to the statement, “MCC welcomes the doubling of the standard deduction and the expansion of 529 education plans in the proposed legislation, but has serious concerns about, among other things, the repeal of the personal exemption, which will harm larger families; the failure to expand the child tax credit; the elimination of the deduction for medical expenses in the House plan; the House’s plan to eliminate incentives for employers to offer adoption assistance; and the failure to adopt an “above-the-line” charitable deduction that would incentivize and assist charitable giving at all income levels, and increase the amounts people can give.”

MCC is the public policy voice of Catholic Church in Minnesota.

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