How would the US pay for universal health care? It’s time to come clean. A new Urban Institute study finds that a full-blown Medicare for All plan would boost federal government healthcare spending by a net of $32 trillion over the next decade. TPC’s Howard Gleckman has some advice for backers of the plan such as presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren: “If you love the idea of a universal single-payer government health insurance program, you have to explain how you would finance it. And that means you must, in some way, confront a complex series of trade-offs—many inextricably tied up in the tax code.”
Next week: A conversation about the effects of the TCJA. The American Enterprise Institute hosts two panel discussions on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on October 22 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm. The first, on growth effects of the law, includes Aparna Mathur and Alan Viard of AEI, Jason Furman of Harvard, Glenn Hubbard of Columbia, and Maya MacGuiness of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. Elaine Maag, Len Burman, and Bill Gale of TPC will join Kyle Pomerleau of the Tax Foundation and Alex Brill of AEI to discuss on the law’s distributional effects. RSVP to attend here, or watch online live here.
IRS/TPC Research Conference Call for Papers, due December 2. The 10th Annual IRS/TPC Research Conference on Tax Administration will take place on June 18, 2020. Proposals for papers are due on December 2, 2019. Subjects include measuring and influencing taxpayer compliance, estimating costs of compliance, tax complexity, improving tax administration, and understanding the nature and behavior of taxpayers. More information on the call for papers and submitting a proposal is here.
A closer look at Intuit’s TurboTax and filing taxes for free. Or not. ProPublica reports on the tax prep software business and how it has used lobbying, marketing, and digital coding to maximize its profits. The results, according to ProPublica: A multi-billion dollar franchise and unnecessary costs to consumers.
Michigan’s House of Representatives approves four bills to tax online retailers. The legislation would codify the sales and use taxes that out-of-state retailers currently collect, and extend those taxes to online marketplaces selling third-party products. If enacted, the expanded tax base would generate millions annually in additional tax revenue. The bills have been referred to the Michigan Senate for consideration.
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