Washington – The U.S. House of Representatives passed a repeal of the estate tax with a 240-179 vote. The repeal now moves onto the U.S. Senate, where the legislation is credited to not pass due to President Barack Obama threatening to veto the repeal.

“Repealing the estate exclusively benefits just the wealthiest one or two estates out of every thousand” and “would add hundreds of billions to the deficit,” the White House said in a statement explaining its veto threat.

The vote passed April 16 with Republicans claiming the estate tax will put a 40 percent levy on inherited assets, which burdens small business and farms. Yet the White House claims that 99 percent of Americans, which includes these same small businesses and farms, are exempt from paying estate taxes because of their profited wealth based on per individuals and per couples.

“The elimination of this burdensome tax will encourage small and medium-sized businesses to reach their full economic potential without worrying about the liquidity of their capital investment, tax implications of innovation, or the use of valuable resources on estate planning and compliance,” the National Association of Manufacturers wrote in a letter to House members.

Thirty-four percent of the members of the National Federation of Independent Business said
they spent funds to protect themselves and their heirs from estate tax liability.

The current estate tax law says individuals with estates of under $5.43 million this year, and couples with $10.86 million estates, are exempt from paying the tax. When their amount of assets fall above those levels, these estates pay a maximum of 40 percent on those assets.

Seven Democrats voted to repeal the estate tax, while three Republicans voted against it the repeal. Even though the White House has said it will veto the legislature, the proposed bill seems like it won’t receive the 60 necessary votes to break a Democratic filibuster in the Senate.


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