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U.S./world – Tax-break push – $52B over 10 years

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Charities and religious groups are teaming up to lobby Congress to extend the charitable deduction to all taxpayers.

The Coalition to Help America Give, to be announced Tuesday, says 85 million households in the U.S., or 70 percent of taxpayers, don’t itemize their tax returns and so can’t deduct their charitable contributions.

By extending the deduction, the group says, Congress would give a tax break to non-itemizers – mainly poor and middle-income taxpayers.

The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates the deduction would generate $52 billion in tax relief over the next 10 years, the coalition says.

PricewaterhouseCoopers has estimated the charitable deduction could boost giving by up to $14 billion the first year, or $160 billion over 10 years, and prompt 11 million Americans to become new givers.

The coalition is being organized by Independent Sector, a nonprofit trade group, and includes the Salvation Army, March of Dimes and United Cerebral Palsy.

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