Tags: Rick Perry | rick perry | export-import bank | scandals | tax reform

Rick Perry: Tax Reform Needed More Than Export-Import Bank

Image: Rick Perry: Tax Reform Needed More Than Export-Import Bank
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Wednesday, 06 May 2015 11:11 AM

Potential presidential candidate Rick Perry has reversed himself on his support of the Export-Import Bank due to his outrage over a series of alleged corruption and bribery scandals at the institution.

In an opinion column for The Wall Street Journal, Perry says there are far better ways to help American businesses grow and create  jobs, starting with cutting the sky-high corporate tax rate.

Perry wrote that while he was the governor of Texas, he was a strong advocate for the Export-Import Bank in light of the fact that it helped Texas create 1.5 million jobs from 2007-2014.

But Perry says that recent bribery charges against a bank employee, as well as a slew of other corruption and fraud cases, have made him rethink his position on the reauthorization of the government agency.

"Since 2007, more than 1,200 Texas companies have obtained help from Ex-Im in financing more than $24 billion in exports," he wrote.

"As governor, I feared that because global competitors use institutions similar to the Ex-Im Bank to help their companies export goods to us, shutting down the Ex-Im Bank would mean unilaterally disarming in a fight that Europe and China intend to win.

"That is why, in June 2014, I wrote a letter to Congress urging the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank. Next month, the bank comes up for reauthorization again. But this time I can’t get on board.

"I have been deeply disturbed by recent revelations of corruption and bribery at the institution. On April 13, the Justice Department announced that a former Ex-Im loan officer, Johnny Gutierrez, had pleaded guilty to accepting bribes on 19 separate occasions from people with interests before the bank.

"Michael McCarthy, Ex-Im’s acting inspector general, has told Congress that there are 31 corruption and fraud investigations into the bank still pending. Those at Ex-Im who have abused the public trust must be pursued to the full extent of the law. But it may be that the best way to mend Ex-Im is to end it."

Perry, who has not yet formally announced his candidacy for the White House in 2016, went on to say that if U.S. companies want to compete in the global marketplace, the government must help them in three ways.

"First, we need to clean up the tax code, ensuring that corporate taxes are fair, simple and competitive," Perry wrote. "Today, the top federal corporate tax rate is 35 percent, one of the highest in the developed world. And that is before you pile on state and local taxes.

"Second, we have to begin to retire the federal debt by reducing spending instead of increasing taxes. There is considerable evidence that as the size of a nation’s public debt approaches its annual economic output, growth slows to a crawl.

"Third, we have to make the regulatory system stable and predictable so that it’s easier for U.S. businesses to get off the ground."

He concluded by saying that tax reform is "a more effective way" to improve the competitiveness of U.S. companies.

"In Texas, we have long maintained a stable and predictable regulatory climate. We balanced our budget for 14 straight years," he said. "And we have worked hard to keep the tax burden on families and employers as low as possible. Those policies have resulted in a sustained economic boom for the state.

"If we want to bring Texas' prosperity to the nation as a whole, we'll have to do a lot more than terminate Ex-Im. But that's where we should begin."

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Potential presidential candidate Rick Perry has reversed himself on his support of the Export-Import Bank due to his outrage over a series of alleged corruption and bribery scandals at the institution.
rick perry, export-import bank, scandals, tax reform
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2015-11-06
Wednesday, 06 May 2015 11:11 AM
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