Supercommittee Must Reform Taxes, Roll Back Job-Killing Regulations

Wednesday, 19 Oct 2011 09:47 AM

By Ralph Reed

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From the Faith & Freedom Coalition website.

The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction must vote on a plan with the goal of $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction by Nov. 23. We believe the “supercommittee” can do that while stimulating economic growth and promoting a tax reform agenda that doesn’t raise taxes.

Public perception of the amount of money that government wastes has reached a record high. A Sept. 2011 Gallup poll revealed that Americans believe for the first time that more than half of government spending is wasted, marking a new high since Gallup first started asking about the issue in 1979.

Citizen organizations are offering plenty of spending-cut options to the supercommittee. Many of the budget-cutting suggestions would reduce the size of government and lead to a balanced budget. Citizens Against Government Waste proposed a specific list of 691 recommendations that would save taxpayers $1.8 trillion over five years without raising taxes.

Smart tax reform will produce economic growth. For example, reducing individual and corporate tax rates and closing loopholes will provide some certainty to the capital markets and spur entrepreneurs to invest in new products, ideas, and equipment.

The supercommittee should be bold and cut spending without raising taxes by utilizing the suggestions of independent organizations such as Citizens Against Government Waste, Heritage Foundation, Cato Institute, National Taxpayers Union, Americans for Limited Government, Taxpayers Protection Alliance, and many others.

As a start, the supercommittee should imitate the House Appropriations Committee draft fiscal year 2012 Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) funding bill that ends funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Family Planning Programs, “Race to the Top,” and blocks further funding for the implementation of Obamacare until the courts have ruled.

Meaningful entitlement reform along the lines proposed by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan should also be considered.

The economy should be grown by reviewing and rolling back job-killing regulations promulgated in the past several years such as light bulb regulation, proxy access rules, community reinvestment mandates, network neutrality, and by implementing tort reform including putting monetary caps on non-economic damage awards — and putting in place a one-year regulatory moratorium.

And the supercommittee, once again as a start, should imitate the recent House Appropriations draft FY2012 LHHS funding bill that eliminates funding for Project Labor Agreements (PLAs), ergonomics, paying federal employees while conducting official union activities and NLRB-authorized “quickie” union elections.

The tax code should be reformed by broadening the tax base without raising taxes. Cut personal and corporate tax rates while phasing out most deductions and all loopholes while avoiding any stealth tax increases.

The U.S. corporate tax rate is the highest in the world and corporations lose incentives to invest while regulations promulgated by EPA, DOL, and the NLRB inhibit entrepreneurial risk takers and undermine confidence and stability.

President Barack Obama's policies have made things worse. Since taking office in January 2009 the following items have increased:
  • Federal spending — from $2.5 trillion to $3.3 trillion
  • Federal deficit — from $642 billion to $1.7 trillion
  • Federal debt — from $10 trillion to $14.8 trillion
  • Foreclosures — topped 1 million in 2010 for the first time in history
  • Gas prices — over 110 percent
  • Healthcare insurance premiums — 9 percent in 2011 over last year
  • Amount of payments to dead federal retirees — ranges from $100 million to $150 million per year
  • Poverty — 15.1 percent of Americans (highest rate in 28 years)
  • Unemployment — above 9 percent for 26 of the last 28 months
  • Regulations — published over 80,000 pages in the Federal Register — highest number since 2000 (last year of Clinton administration)
Meanwhile, the number of Americans who think the country is headed in the right direction: less than 20 percent.




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