President Obama was visiting troops in Afghanistan over the weekend so Vice President Joe Biden stepped in to deliver the weekly address. During his speech, Biden discussed the pending expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts as well as concerns about the expired unemployment benefits extension. Immediately upon his return from abroad, Obama got right down to business and began working to find a solution to these two issues.

Yesterday President Obama announced a tentative plan for addressing the expiring tax cuts as well as the unemployment benefit issue. In short, the economic plan makes the following proposals:

  • Extend all of the Bush-era tax cuts for another two years; this includes tax cuts for individuals earning more than $200,000 per year and couples earning more than $250,000 annually.
  • Continuation of the $1,000 Child Tax Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit and the American Opportunity Tax Credit.
  • A 2 percent reduction in payroll tax cuts for employees for calendar year 2011.
  • A 13-month extension on unemployment insurance for approximately 2 million Americans that would otherwise lose their benefits in the coming months. Unfortunately this doesn’t provide additional benefits to the 99ers, those that have exhausted all 99 weeks of unemployment insurance.
  • A $5 million exemption on estate taxes with a top tax rate of 35 percent.
Of course this is all just a proposal and everything has to pass through Congress before implementation.

What do you think about these propositions – yay or nay?

Photo: The White House/Flickr

Watch: Obama on taxes and unemployment benefits
On Monday, President Obama took his turn discussing middle class tax cuts and extending unemployment benefits.