“Should old acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?” It’s that time of year: TPC’s Howard Gleckman shares TaxVox’s Lump of Coal Awards for the ten worst tax policy ideas of 2019. Can you guess what made the list?
“And surely you'll buy your pint cup… and surely I'll buy mine…” China’s imports of US soybeans rose to 2.6 million tons in November—twice the amount than in October—following the announcement of the completion of “phase one” of a trade deal between the US and China. The two nations are finalizing details before signing the trade deal, which includes an agreement by China to buy more agricultural products from the US.
“We’ve wandered many a weary foot since auld lang syne…” TPC’s Steve Rosenthal and Safia Sayed review the tax measures in “Further Consolidated Appropriations Act” of 2020. The government has funding through September 30, 2020, but the tax measures move in the wrong fiscal direction. They add $426 billion to the nation’s debt over the next ten years. Their benefits flow mainly to high-income taxpayers. And many technical and substantive problems with the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and serious issues in the tax system overall remain. On the bright side: “Taxes are at center stage of the presidential debate. And there will continue to be reform opportunities for tax policy for many years to come.”
“And there's a hand my trusty friend! And give me a hand o' thine!” Join TPC on January 16 at a conference to explore whether the tax system should be used to reduce wealth inequality in the US. Jason Furman, former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers in the Obama administration, and panels of experts will consider the following questions: What has been the impact of wealth inequality on different groups in the United States? How does wealth concentration affect politics and public policy? Would reducing after-tax wealth affect the political power of the wealthy and social and economic divisions across groups? What are the pros and cons of using the tax system, instead of other government interventions, to reduce wealth inequality? Register for the event here.
Congress is not in session. The Daily Deduction will publish on Mondays only until Congress returns. Happy New Year.
For the latest tax news, subscribe to the Tax Policy Center’s Daily Deduction. Sign up here to have it delivered to your inbox weekdays at 8:00 am (Mondays only when Congress is in recess). We welcome tips on new research or other news. Email Renu Zaretsky at email@example.com.
Posts and comments are solely the opinion of the author and not that of the Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute, or Brookings Institution.
- © Urban Institute, Brookings Institution, and individual authors, 2020.