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Tax Reform Panel's Report Scores Some Hits, Many Misses, Citizen Group's Analysis Contends
For Immediate Release November 1, 2005
(Alexandria, VA) -- While some recommendations from the final report of the President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform meet its mission statement of being "simple, fair, and pro-growth," on balance the findings may disappoint grassroots activists who have been building momentum for a new and better tax system over the last decade. That's the assessment of the 350,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU), which today offered an analysis of the Panel's blueprint.
On March 18, NTU submitted comments to the President's Panel, recommending short-term steps such as a permanent ban on Internet access taxes as well as predatory taxes on e-commerce. Over the long term, however, NTU called for complete replacement of the current tax system, preferably with a retail-level national sales tax (such as the "FairTax" legislation, H.R. 25 and S. 25). Based on this past testimony, NTU provided a "hit and miss" scorecard of the report:
HIT -- Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) Repeal. The Panel has given new encouragement in Congress to lawmakers seeking to end rather than mend the AMT.
"Americans who hope the Tax Reform Panel's report will light a fire under policymakers may only see a few smoldering embers by the time the Washington establishment gets through with it," NTU President John Berthoud concluded. "The two separate overhaul plans put forth by the Panel might have been radical if this were 1985 instead of 2005, but they are less so when compared to comprehensive flat tax and national retail sales tax legislation now before Congress. Treasury Secretary Snow should bear this historical context in mind and strongly recommend these options to the President as well."
NTU was founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes and smaller government. Note: NTU's testimony to the Panel, along with numerous studies on Tax Code reform, is available at www.ntu.org.