There’s a lot there to like.
Let’s go through it:
Permanently Extend the 2001 and 2003 Tax Cuts.
- Reduced individual income tax rates, saving every tax-paying family a minimum of $600.
- Preserving the $1000 child tax credit, which was doubled from $500 per child.
- Protecting Marriage penalty relief.
- Retaining Education tax incentives, including Coverdell Education Savings Accounts, 529 college savings plans, and deductions for higher education expenses.
- Reduced tax rates on capital gains and qualified dividends.
- Increased expensing of investment for small businesses.
All good stuff so far. Bush’s tax cuts have really helped the economy, and making them permanent will keep the economy happy.
Permanently Repeal the Death Tax.
Excellent. You shouldn’t be taxed twice on your money.
Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax.
Now that the AMT is hitting people who aren’t considered “rich” anymore, it makes sense to either change it or remove it entirely.
Reduce the Corporate Tax Rate.
And where does that money go? To the UBER RICH, of course. (And that means Democrats!)
I kid, of course. It gets reinvested into the economy! Better than being flushed down the government moneyhole.
Permanently Extend Small Business Expensing.
Update and Simplify Depreciation Schedules.
Both would do wonders for small business.
This is the only part of the plan I’m not entirely enamored with, although it’s better than what we currently have. Effectively it’s “pay income tax like it normally goes OR pay a flat tax”. It’s like the old square on the Monopoly board where your Income Tax was 10% of the money you had or $200 (if only it were that simple!). I don’t like it because it’s a cop out. Fiscal conservatives have been after a Flat Tax for a long time, and what Fred has in his tax proposal is a good start. But homeowners aren’t given an incentive to select the flat tax so long as they have a mortgage, because with the Flat Tax there are no deductions for mortgage interest. If there’s one deduction that people really want, it’s the mortgage interest deduction because it helps people buy a house and live the dream.
Flat tax doesn’t account for it. But otherwise, it’s great for single people who rent (which the current system is not good for) or people who have small deductions.
Fred missed an opportunity here. The Flat Tax can allow some deductions, like for mortgage, if it’s built in. Go ahead, allow the mortgage deduction and child-related expenses, but toss every other deduction that’s out there. If you simplify the tax code to a Flat Tax with minimal deduction, there’s no reason to have the staffing of the IRS as it’s been with the current tax code. Reducing the number of IRS accountants frees up government money and reduces overhead and bureaucracy. So why not go whole hog?
But this is the kind of thing I like to see from candidates– plans. Not a nebulous “what I would do if I were Prez” type of BS. I’m talking steps to a tax plan. Steps to reducing government. Changes that need to be made at certain levels. And for goodness sake, don’t say stupid things like “No Muslims in my cabinet”, Mitt.