Senate approves amendment to repeal ‘death tax’

Senate approves amendment to repeal ‘death tax’

The Senate approved a budget amendment Thursday that supports a repeal of the estate tax.

Senators voted 54-46 on the amendment. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) broke rank and voted against the amendment, while Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) voted for it.

The amendment, offered by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), aims to repeal the estate tax, sometimes referred to as the “death tax.” Under the tax, an estate, or assets, have to be worth more than $5.43 million before they are taxed.

Thune, ahead of the vote, said “a death in the family should not be a taxable event. … It also hits farmers particularly hard.”

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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) fired back that “this amendment is not about family farms or small business. This amendment exclusively the wealthiest 0.3 percent of the families in this country.”

Like many votes taken during the “vote-a-rama,” the approval isn’t binding, but it sets the stage for a decision later in the appropriations process.

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