Death Tax

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Hello everybody out there in farm country. This radio commentary is brought to you by the National Corn Growers Association, CropLife America, and Renewable Fuels Association. They are all friends, supporters, and allies of a healthy farm economy and prosperous rural America. Thank you.

And now for today’s commentary –

From Washington with John Block

We read and hear about a $3.5 trillion anti-poverty and climate bill the Democratic leadership wants to pass. But we can’t afford to spend that much money. They say, “no problem. We can just tax the rich.” O.K. Let’s take a serious look at one proposed tax idea. It is the transfer tax, and it will destroy family farms and small businesses of all kinds. Turn our attention to Representative Collin Peterson, a Democrat. He led the House Agriculture Committee for years in the business of Agriculture. He has enormous respect on both sides of the aisle. Here is what he thinks about the proposed transfer tax on family farms at death.

“Over the years we fought to get the estate tax exemption raised and to keep the step up in basis system, and the law is now a culmination of policies that work well for farmers. I would argue this transfer tax, which could be as high as 43.4%, is the worst idea that has been proposed in terms of its impact on agriculture in my lifetime. This proposal is a direct assault on agriculture because it will prohibit the transfer of a family farm from one generation to the next which is the last thing we should want to do. If this proposal becomes law, you could have a situation where upon the death of a farmer, his family will owe more than the equity that they have in the “farm operation.”

I think small businesses are the base and foundation of our nation’s prosperity. I read that Congress is somewhat concerned about foreign owners buying our farmland – especially China. Well, if the proposed transfer tax becomes law, millions of acres will be up for sale. Families will not be able to stay in business. There will be no escape. Virtually every farm family will be affected. At this point the proposed tax bill is not law – yet. We need to continue the fight to stop it. Let me close by saying “Get your COVID-19 vaccination shot.” I got mine back in February. Didn’t hurt at all. You will be a lot safer.

Until next week, this John Block reporting from Washington, D.C. If you would like to review my radio shows going back more than 20 years, just go on-line to