Tester votes for estate tax exemption on working farms and ranches

Measure also cuts taxes for all Americans on first $200,000 of annual income

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after his vote in support of an estate tax exemption for working farms and ranches, a permanent and predictable fix for the estate tax, and tax cuts for all Americans on the first $250,000 of their annual income:

“Today I voted to exempt working farm and ranch land from the estate tax and to cut taxes for all Americans on the first quarter million dollars they earn every year.  Montanans need certainty, predictability and common sense when it comes to their taxes, not more politics.

“The election is over, and that means it’s time to put politics aside and work together to get our economy back on track.  So it’s a shame that there are too many professional politicians in Washington looking out for their millionaire and billionaire friends.  

“Instead, we’ve got to aim tax relief squarely at family farms and ranches, small businesses and working families.  They are the real job creators in this country.

“I’m proud of my record of cutting taxes for middle class Montanans, and I’ll continue fighting to make sure middle class Americans don’t get stuck with a raw deal.”

The measure Tester supported would have extended the current income tax rates for all Americans on the first $200,000 of their income.  The legislation also includes an expanded student loan interest deduction, and a repeal of a component of the health care reform law that imposes additional tax reporting requirements on small businesses.

Tester today also supported a separate measure that would have extended current tax cuts for all Americans on the first $1 million of their annual income.  Both tax measures failed to receive the 60 votes necessary for approval.

Tester helped write and pass into law the most significant tax relief in decades for Montanans as a part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which included the:

  • Making Work Pay tax credit
  • First time homebuyer tax credit
  • Child tax credit
  • Earned income tax credit
  • Social Security and Veterans tax credits

Tester also helped pass the Small Business Jobs Act which cut taxes for small businesses across the country by more than $12 billion without adding to the nation’s debt.