US President George Bush has demanded Congress enact his $150bn tax relief plan as soon as possible as the economy enters a "period of uncertainty".
Delivering his final State of the Union address, Bush warned Congress against the temptation to load up the bill, as it would only delay or derail the plan.
“In the long run, Americans can be confident about our economic growth. But in the short run, we can all see that that growth is slowing,” the President says.
“This is a good agreement that will keep our economy growing and our people working. And this Congress must pass it as soon as possible.”
Bush says while the US has added jobs for a record 52 straight months, employment is now growing at a slower pace.
“Wages are up, but so are prices for food and gas. Exports are rising, but the housing market has declined,” Bush says.
“At kitchen tables across our country, there is a concern about our economic future.
“To build a prosperous future, we must trust people with their own money and empower them to grow our economy.”
Bush also says the US government has more work to do on relieving the tax burden on Americans.
"Some in Washington argue that letting tax relief expire is not a tax increase,” the President adds.
“Try explaining that to 116m American taxpayers who would see their taxes rise by an average of $1,800.
"American families should not have to worry about their federal government taking a bigger bite out of their paychecks.
"There's only one way to eliminate this uncertainty: Make the tax relief permanent. And members of Congress should know: If any bill raises taxes reaches my desk, I will veto it.”
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