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President Bush Touts Mailing of Tax Rebate Checks

Aired July 20, 2001 - 12:02   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: We're going to take you to Kansas City, folks, where we are standing by for President Bush and Dick Cheney.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

(LAUGHTER)

HARRIS: Well, it appears as though they have a technical glitch, the kind of thing that we run into quite a bit on this show.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, Dick, thank you very much.

HARRIS: There you go.

(LAUGHTER)

I'm in Europe today for a summit meeting with the leaders of the world's most industrialized economies, but I couldn't miss this important day for America. Today, the benefits of tax relief begin coming home for everyone who paid income taxes in America. Tax relief is now as real as a stamp, an envelope and a check, first in the mailbox, and very soon in the hands of our American taxpayers.

You know, this really isn't a gift from the government, this is a refund of your own money, money you've earned and money you will now be able to spend.

In February, I told the American people that our federal government was overcharging them. I said the federal government was overcharging them, and on your behalf I demanded a refund. Congress worked with me in a bipartisan way, and now your money is on its way back to you.

You may choose to buy something your family needs. You may choose to pay your bills, reduce credit card debt or save for the future. It's your money, and it's your choice.

And you can feel comfortable spending your refund check if you want to, because there is more to come. These checks are just one installment of tax relief, the result of lowering the current lowest income tax bracket of 15 percent to a new lower 10 percent bracket. Some reductions in tax rates went into effect on July 1, and already evident in lowering withholding of taxes from your paycheck. More reductions are coming in the months and years to come. The child credit will increase this year. The marriage penalty will be reduced. The death tax will ultimately be repealed.

It's all part of the tax relief plan passed into law earlier this summer. For many of you, this refund is coming just when you need it. Over the last few years, energy prices and credit card debt have been rising and many families have felt the squeeze. These checks will help provide timely relief.

And by helping tens of millions of Americans, we will help our economy. Beginning late last summer and early fall, our economy, especially the manufacturing sector, began slowing. The combination of this tax relief and lower interest rates should help get it moving again.

I thank all of those who've supported this tax relief for the past year and a half, since I first proposed it during my campaign in the state of Iowa. I thank all the Republicans and many Democrats in Congress who joined me to make it a reality. Some of those members are with you here today, including Trent Lott and House Ways and Means Chairman Bill Thomas.

I want to thank those fine leaders.

I also thank Secretary Treasury Paul O'Neill for his strong leadership.

And, of course, I want to thank my friend, the vice president of the United States, Dick Cheney. No better vice president has ever existed in the United States. And that's saying something, since I knew another vice president, by the way.

For all those who feel their taxes and bills are too high, and they could use a little help: Help is on the way.

Thank you all very much.

It's an honor to represent the greatest country on the face of the Earth here in Italy. I look forward to seeing you when I come home. In the meantime, God bless you all and God bless America.

(LAUGHTER)

HARRIS: And with that, we've been sort of being flies on the wall here as President Bush all the way from Genoa, Italy, where he is at G8 Summit meeting there, was speaking to those who were assembled there at this IRS center in Kansas City, Missouri.

At the top of that, what we were seeing was Vice President Dick Cheney, who was actually introducing the president. And the president went on to encourage people to take those checks when they get them and get out there and spend them right away.

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