Texas Senator Ted Cruz issued a press release today outlining seven key principles he sees as crucial to reforming the federal tax code.
Among the items mentioned are the establishment of a single “low flat tax rate”, a reduction in the corporate tax rate, and simplification of the tax code so that those filing can “file their returns on a postcard”.
“Now is our moment to remake our tax system from the ground up, employing conservative principles to create a new tax code that is simpler, flatter, and fairer,” Sen. Cruz said. “Much like Ronald Reagan, today’s conservatives hold to the simplest of ideals: that the best-utilized tax dollar is the tax dollar that goes uncollected. The best place for a taxpayer’s money is with that taxpayer, not the federal government.”
Cruz presented his seven elements earlier today during the keynote speech at a Tax Foundation event. Those elements are “based on three key principles of growth, simplicity, and fairness”.
Though the list is rife with conservative ideals, getting such a proposal through Congress and past President Trump will be a monumental task. Trump is scheduled to discuss tax reform over dinner with his new liberal friends “Chuck and Nancy”, neither of whom is likely to endorse any of the seven items on Cruz’ list. Add to that the fact that establishment Republicans seem either unwilling or unable (or both?) to enact substantive change and … well, you get the picture.
But we can always hope – and more importantly, we can call and email our elected officials and get the word out via social media that regular, everyday Americans want and need serious, conservative tax reform.
The “seven critical elements” as they appeared in the press release:
- Create a Low, Flat Rate: Currently there are seven individual tax brackets, with rates as high as nearly 40 percent. We should have one low flat tax rate.
- File Taxes on a Postcard: Each year, more than 90 percent of taxpayers seek help to prepare their returns, either through tax preparers or tax preparation software, costing them $99 billion. Simpler, flatter taxes will save Americans time and money, and allow them to file their returns on a postcard.
- Allow Immediate Expensing: Domestic capital investment increases productivity, which results in more jobs and higher wages. And that means higher living standards for American families.
- Lower the Corporate Rate: Companies are leaving the United States in droves, and taking their jobs with them. By lowering the corporate rate to 15-20 percent, America becomes competitive with the rest of world.
- Encourage Repatriation: Current law discourages companies from bringing home foreign earnings. Moving to a territorial system would ensure foreign earnings are not double-taxed.
- End the Death Tax: More than 99 percent of U.S. employer firms are small businesses, many of them family-owned. The death tax establishes a burden that prevents families from being able to keep their businesses running from one generation to the next, and should be put to an end.
- End the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT): The AMT applies to four million households, and requires millions of taxpayers to calculate their taxes twice, once under the regular tax code and again under the AMT. Ending the AMT will drastically simplify taxes for millions of American families.