WASHINGTON-  On behalf of all taxpayers Americans for Tax Reform, the country\’s most influential taxpayer organization, today urged President Clinton to sign the Death Tax Elimination Act.

The Death Tax Elimination Act, which passed the House and Senate overwhelmingly last month with wide bipartisan support, would phase out the death tax over 10 years, ending the unfair tax on small, family-owned farms and businesses.

Grover Norquist, president of ATR, issued the following statement:

"Today, we implore the President to sign the Death Tax Elimination Act.  It is wrong for the government to tax a person\’s death.

"The government has no business erecting a toll booth on the stairway to heaven.  It is time this egregious tax is eliminated.  Those who are hurt most by this horrific tax are those who have built their own small businesses and family farms. 

"Studies have shown that by eliminating the death tax, the economy would actually grow at a faster rate, resulting in increased revenue for the government than if the government taxed the money before it is passed on to the decedent\’s family.  Moreover, according to the Wall Street Journal, 200,000 extra jobs could be created each year with money that small family-owned farms and businesses currently spend on paying or preparing for the death tax.

"Poll after poll demonstrates that the vast majority of Americans believe the death tax is bad for families and the nation\’s economy and that it should be put to death immediately.

"While Clinton and Gore continue to pit people against people in their never ending battle to perpetuate \’class warfare,\’ millions of families and small business owners continue to worry about whether they are going to have to hold a liquidation sale to pay their loved one\’s \’death tax.\’  On behalf of all taxpayers, we urge President Clinton to kill the death tax now."