John Irons's Blog


Economic News, Data and Analysis

No tax reform push?

Looks like administration officials are backing off tax reform. The below is from Time, but Bloomberg and Reuters have run with the story as well. Tax Reform: A Balk? — Dec. 12, 2005 — Page 1
President Bush may have drawn cheers at campaign rallies last year by calling the federal income tax code “a complicated mess” and promising to make its “million pages” simpler and fairer. But H&R Block can breathe easy for another season. Bush aides tell TIME that the President is likely to postpone any big push for comprehensive tax reform–which looked like it would be a centerpiece of next year’s agenda–until ’07 or ’08. In the meantime, he will probably start small by mentioning the issue in the State of the Union and other addresses next year. Tax reform tested poorly with a Republican-financed focus group, showing more groundwork needs to be laid. The official White House stance is that Bush has not decided whether to pursue the idea next year, but aides say they doubt they could attract Democratic support in a midterm-election year. And the G.O.P. is gun-shy after the Social Security debacle. “No one wants to put something out there that’s not going to go anywhere,” a White House official said. But House Republicans are still likely to pass a simplification measure by April 15 so they can bash the IRS on the campaign trail.

Filed under: Economics

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