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Some (Tax) Holidays Are Much Better Than Others

June 9, 2011

Two very different “tax holidays” are on the table as policymakers consider ways to help the sluggish economy. Only one of them would work.

Top 5 Charts on the Bush Tax Cuts

June 7, 2011

On the tenth anniversary of the 2001 tax-cut law, we’ve assembled five charts that show how the tax cuts have affected the deficit, the economy, and people’s incomes — and why letting them expire on schedule should be front and center during deficit-reduction negotiations.

Costly Estate Tax Giveaway Should Expire After 2012

June 3, 2011

A little-noticed feature of last December’s tax cut-unemployment insurance deal between President Obama and congressional Republicans was a further cut in the estate tax below its already-low 2009 level. The current estate tax rules run through the end of 2012, and in a new paper we explain why Congress should let them expire on schedule.

House GOP “Jobs” Plan a Non-Answer to Nation’s Challenges

May 27, 2011

The United States faces high unemployment, stagnant living standards for working and middle-class people, increasingly high inequality, and an unsustainable long-term fiscal path. Unfortunately, the main tax policy elements of the “House Republican Plan for America’s Job Creators” announced yesterday would ignore or significantly worsen each of these problems:

Reality Check on Who Pays Taxes

May 26, 2011

Some policymakers and pundits are using the recent finding by Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation that 51 percent of households owed no federal income tax in 2009 to argue that low- and moderate-income families don’t pay sufficient taxes. Our new report explains why those claims are unfounded. In brief:

On Corporate Taxes, “Territorial” Means “Zero”

May 19, 2011

Several top corporate executives say the United States should adopt a “territorial” tax system. Translation? They think the U.S. tax rate on the profits that corporations earn on their overseas investments should be zero.

The Rich Are “Different” — But Don’t Treat Them That Way

May 16, 2011

In an excellent post on the latest IRS data on the 400 highest-income taxpayers, the Tax Policy Center’s Roberton Williams cites F. Scott Fitzgerald’s famous quote — “Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me” — and then shows just how different. With an average income of $270 million in 2008, the typical household in the Top 400 made 4,700 times as much as the average American filing a 1040 form.

Cost of Proposed Corporate Tax Holiday Soars

May 11, 2011

As I explained recently, corporations have launched a massive lobbying campaign for another temporary tax holiday for overseas profits they bring back to this country. Part of their pitch has been that it would effectively be a “free lunch” for taxpayers. Today, the cost of that supposedly “free” lunch went way, way up.

Ending Tax Cuts for Wealthy Would Make Major Contribution to Deficit Reduction

May 9, 2011

A recent Jennifer Rubin column in the Washington Post cites an OECD report and some CBO data to make her case that: “We can’t solve the debt problem by grabbing more money from the rich.”

Evidence Overwhelmingly Against Another Tax Amnesty for Overseas Corporate Profits

April 28, 2011

Today’s Washington Post story on the doings of the Washington “influence industry” (as the headline puts it) spotlights the massive lobbying campaign underway to convince Congress to grant large multinational corporations a temporary tax holiday for overseas profits they bring back to this country. This sets up a classic Washington battle of influence versus evidence.