Herseth wishes South Dakotans weren\\\’t getting Death Tax relief, vows to work for elimination of Bush tax cuts

WASHINGTON-Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), the nation\\\’s leading taxpayer advocacy organization, today blasted South Dakota special election candidate Stephanie Herseth (D) for her opposition to repealing the Death Tax, and her current plans to support the automatic tax increase on the horizon.

On August 15, 2002, Herseth said, "I would not have supported the tax cuts or the elimination of the inheritance tax. In these times we need to keep the tax money as a source of revenue," (Beresford Republic)

The Death Tax, also known as the inheritance tax, is viewed by many as the most unfair tax in existence. Every dime to which the Death Tax is applied has already been taxed at least once, and it is often paid by farmers and small businesspeople who had hoped to pass on their life\\\’s work. Because it taxes assets, in many cases farms and businesses must be partially or completely liquidated to pay the grieving families\\\’ tax bill. In a recent poll, more than 75% of respondents favored the elimination of the Death Tax.

"The last thing South Dakota needs is for Stephanie Herseth to resurrect the Death Tax," said Grover Norquist, taxpayer advocate and president of ATR. "Thanks to the Bush tax cuts-which Herseth opposed-South Dakotans are enjoying a gradual phase out of the Death Tax. The trouble is, if Herseth gets her way, the Death Tax will be back-with a vengeance."

Because of rules mandated by tax-and-spend liberals in Congress, the repeal of the Death Tax in 2001 had to be made temporary. As a result, the Death Tax is slowly being phased out until 2010, at which time it will suddenly return in full force, claiming as much as 55% from some deceased South Dakotans.

"Once again, South Dakotans just have to hope they get lucky. If grandpa dies one year, the family farm makes it. If he dies the next year, it doesn\\\’t. Instead, the tax man will be trying to pry out his gold fillings," concluded Norquist.

Herseth has stated she opposes making all of the Bush tax cuts permanent, and refuses to take the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, in which candidates promise not to raise taxes. In the race for South Dakota\\\’s Congressional seat, Larry Diedrich (R) is the only major candidate who has signed the Pledge.