As part of the current proposed tax changes, politicians are proposing to eliminate all estate taxes. Under current tax law, when an individual passes away, his or her estate pays no taxes up to $5.5 million ($11 million for couples). After that amount, the remaining estate is taxed at 35 percent.

If the estate tax is eliminated, it is estimated that over the next 10 years, 5,000 of the richest people in America will pass on $269 billion totally tax free to their heirs.

If the current tax laws were maintained for the next 10 years, those individuals would pay $94 billion in taxes.

As a country, we cannot afford to give a gift of $94 billion to the richest among us. That money was created from America businesses and it could be better used for things that could benefit us all such as health care, rebuilding our roads and bridges, paying down the national debt and supporting education. Tell your congressman to vote no to eliminating the estate tax.

Stuart Robertshaw, La Crosse

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