House passes “death tax” repeal

Republicans have said it hurts parents’ ability to pass businesses down to children

Rep. Kevin Brady
Rep. Kevin Brady

The House of Representatives passed a repeal today of the estate tax, voting 240-to-179 to ban the law that taxes inheritances of over $5.43 million at 40 percent.

The passage comes despite threats from President Obama earlier this week to veto the measure if it is passed. The bill is unlikely to make it to Obama’s desk, however, as it is expected to die in the Senate. To override a presidential veto, it would need to secure two-thirds of the Senate’s vote.

Today’s vote was largely along party lines, Reuters reported. Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas sponsored the bill.

Republicans have decried the tax, saying that it hurts parents’ ability to pass businesses down to their children, and unfairly double taxes assets that were already taxed as income.

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Opponents of the repeal point out that it would increase the deficit by $269 billion over 10 years. [Reuters] — Tess Hofmann