Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) and its President Grover Norquist issued a statement Tuesday to clarify that he strongly opposes a carbon tax, Politico reports
On Monday the National Journal quoted him as saying that if a carbon tax was offset by an income tax cut, “it’s possible you could structure something that wasn’t an increase and didn’t violate the pledge.” Most Republican congressmen have signed the ATR’s pledge against raising taxes.
“Americans for Tax Reform opposes a carbon tax and will work tirelessly to ensure one does not become law,” the statement says. “Taxing American energy consumption not only opens up a new revenue stream for proponents of big government, but threatens to forever damage the American economy.”
The statement includes Norquist’s own explanation. “The creation of any new tax such as a VAT [value-added tax] or energy tax — even if originally passed with offsetting tax reductions elsewhere — would inevitably lead to higher taxes as two taxes would be at the disposal of politicians to increase taxes,” he says.
“There is no conceivable way to add an energy or VAT tax to the burdens American taxpayers face that would not violate the pledge over time.” An energy tax or VAT tax would make sense only if the income tax was eliminated, he says.
Some economists, conservatives and environmentalists approve of the carbon tax idea, but Congress is so far showing little inclination to act on it, Politico reports.
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