Democrat Coons Says Extending Bush's Tax Cuts Could Help Jumpstart Economy

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Chris Coons said a quick decision on extending most of the Bush administration’s tax cuts would give investors the certainty they need to jumpstart the economy.

“There’s a trillion dollars in private capital sitting on the sidelines right now,” Coons said. “All that money is sitting there waiting for clear signals about health-care costs, about where we’re going in tax policy.”

Coons and his opponent, Republican Christine O’Donnell, traded barbs on taxes in taped interviews broadcast today on ABC’s “This Week.” Democrats’ chances of holding Delaware’s open U.S. Senate seat, once held by Vice President Joe Biden, have risen as the party seeks to retain control of the chamber in the Nov. 2 elections.

A recent poll in the state gives Coons, 47, county executive of New Castle County, Delaware’s largest county, a 19- point lead over Republican Christine O’Donnell, 41, a marketing consultant. The Oct. 8-11 survey by Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey, showed Coons leading O’Donnell 57 percent to 38 percent among likely voters.

In a recent political ad, O’Donnell said Coons would raise taxes on “everything out there.” Extending all the Bush-era tax cuts would benefit owners of small businesses such as dry cleaners and pizzerias, she said.

‘Scare Tactic’

“There’s this scare tactic coming from the Democrats saying that these tax cuts for the rich are these billionaires who are trying to find places to dock their yachts,” O’Donnell said on “This Week.”

The nonpartisan Cook Political Report projects Democrats will lose at least 40 seats in the House, costing the president’s party control, and lose 7 to 9 seats in the Senate. Democrats currently have a 57-seat majority in the 100-member Senate, with two independent members also supporting the party.

President Barack Obama and Biden traveled to Wilmington on Oct. 15 to raise money for Coons.

White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer, a Delaware native, said Obama made the campaign stop because the contest is “important” and the political climate this year is volatile.

“We leave no stone unturned,” Pfeiffer said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jeff Plungis in Washington D.C. at jplungis@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Silva at msilva34@bloomberg.net.

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