News and Tribune


August 19, 2013

HOWEY: A bipartisan push toward U.S. tax reform



So with gridlock gripping Washington, this appears to be an avenue to actually get something done.

Young said that it is becoming clear that people are “growing weary of austerity.” He said that reforming entitlements is proving to be difficult getting key players aligned into a compromise. It is the tax code revision that holds the most promise, believing it would “grow the economy, create more jobs and make us more competitive.” 

Young and Cam Carter, vice president of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, see the federal tax code “larded” with loopholes. The goal would be to close off many of them. They believe it can be done in a “revenue neutral” manner that would then stimulate the economy. 

John T. Thompson, chairman and CEO of First Electric Supply in Indianapolis, added, “A 25 percent corporate rate would make a tremendous difference in job creation,” saying that increased profits and dividends would be “reinvested back into business. That’s what creates economic growth.”

Young said the tax code for individual taxpayers doesn’t have as many loopholes. The approach he is taking is to essentially “start with a blank sheet of paper” and “take a look at everything.”

Baucus told National Public Radio that a bipartisan conversation is underway on Capitol Hill. “There’s going to be compromise. In the meantime, let’s work to get the code in much better shape.”

Camp explained, “I don’t think we’d be doing our job if we started off with saying, ‘Well, we don’t agree on something, so let’s just stop.’ And, clearly, I think if we can get the right policy, that’s what we really need to look for.”

“It’s been bipartisan effort the entire way,” said Young, who acknowledged poll after poll has shown that American voters want Congress to achieve results on key issues. In May, Pew Research polling showed that 72 percent favor a major change. That included 75 percent of Republicans and independents and 69 percent of Democrats. Pew noted that it found “an unusual level of public agreement that the tax system needs sweeping changes.”

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