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Concerns About the State of the Economy Are Not a Good Reason to Waive PAYGO For AMT Relief

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Several weeks ago, the House of Representatives passed legislation that would provide Alternative Minimum Tax relief for 2007, extend other expiring tax provisions, and offset the cost with various revenue-raising measures. Some have argued that Congress should instead waive its Pay-As-You-Go (PAYGO) rules and deficit finance the cost of the AMT package. Recently, some advocates of this view have offered a new justification for their position. Including offsetting revenue measures, they claim, would dampen AMT relief's positive, stimulus impact on a possibly weakening economy. Even if this were a valid concern with respect to some types of revenue-raising provisions, it does not apply to the revenue raisers included in the House-passed AMT patch bill.