The President's Tax Plans

Education Tax Proposals Would Help Middle-Class Families, Not Hurt Them

Some critics claim that President Obama’s proposal to streamline and better target tax credits for higher education represents an attack on middle-class families, particularly because of the limits it would impose on so-called “529” accounts. That’s backward: the plan overall would do more to help both middle-class and lower-income families afford college. Read more


Greenstein: White House Tax Proposal Will Benefit Economic Growth and Help Millions of Middle- and Lower-Income Families

In recent decades, economic growth has powerfully benefitted Wall Street, while leaving much of Main Street behind. The plan that President Obama unveiled today would take large, important steps to help redress part of the imbalance and make prosperity more broadly shared.

The President’s new tax proposals will surely elicit howls of protest from various special interests and on ideological grounds; adversaries will make predictable claims that the proposals would harm the economy and jobs. Yet while the proposals do present a major challenge to the status quo, they should benefit economic growth, not hinder it, while substantially helping tens of millions of middle- and lower-income working families and individuals. Read more


President’s Capital Gains Tax Plan Would Make Tax Code More Efficient and Fair

The tax code strongly favors income from capital gains — increases in the value of assets, such as stocks — over income from wages and salaries. These preferences are economically inefficient: they promote tax schemes that convert ordinary income into capital gains and encourage people to hold assets just to escape tax, even if they have better investment opportunities. They are also highly regressive, since capital gains are heavily concentrated at the top of the income scale. Read more

More: Tax Analyses

Dynamic Scoring

House “Dynamic Scoring” Rule Likely Will Mean More Tax Cuts — Not More Information

House Republicans amended House rules to require the use of “dynamic scoring” for official cost estimates of tax reform and other major legislation.  

Incoming Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan has said this change is designed simply to generate more information on the impact of proposed policies. In reality, however, the House would be asking CBO and JCT to provide less information, not more, and the new rule could facilitate congressional passage of tax cuts that are revenue-neutral only on paper. Read more

Related: Brief: Why Budget and Tax Plans Shouldn’t Use Dynamic Scoring

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