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U.S./world – Bush talks charity – Incentives for giving

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President Bush on Tuesday asked Congress to enact measures to boost charitable giving and the work of charitable groups.

In a nationally televised speech, Bush said allowing taxpayers to deduct donations, whether or not they itemize their returns, could trigger up to $14 billion a year in new charitable giving.

And he said his budget, to be released today, calls for investing more than $700 million over the next 10 years in a Federal Compassion Capital Fund to provide a mentor to the more than one million youngsters with a parent in prison, and to boost other local efforts to fight illiteracy, teen pregnancy, drug addiction and other social problems.

“These groups are working in every neighborhood in America, to fight homelessness and addiction and domestic violence, to provide a hot meal or a mentor or a safe haven for our children,” Bush told lawmakers. “Government should welcome these groups to apply for funds, not discriminate against them.”

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