With many family incomes stagnant or on the decline and the gap between rich and poor continuing to grow, we cannot afford to continue this regressive and unfair tax on working- and middle-class Americans. Maintaining our current tariff system unwittingly punishes the poor, exempts the rich and fails to protect American jobs.
With the pending free-trade agreements with Panama, Colombia and South Korea coming before Congress soon, it should give strong consideration to removing these unfair tariffs. Thatís a progressive trade policy that benefits low-income and middle-class families.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) is a member of the Ways and Means and Budget committees. Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) is a member of the Rules Committee.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.