Did GOP candidates answer your tax questions in last night’s debate? TPC has a new presidential candidate tax plan scorecard that can fill in any blanks. The scorecard features the available tax plan information from 19 candidates—you can apply a filter to focus on your favorites. Soon to be included: Senator Ted Cruz's plan. Cruz shared his goals for a flat 10 percent individual income tax, and a flat 16 percent business tax last night. He says the Tax Foundation's dynamic scoring showed his plan would cost less than $1 trillion.
The House GOP backs Paul Ryan for Speaker. Ryan won their support even though he backed the now-House-approved two-year budget deal that raises spending caps and the debt ceiling. Conservatives in the party wanted him to oppose it, but under the agreement, there’ll be no government shut-down or debt default between now and the 2016 elections. Now, Ryan said, the GOP can “wipe the slate clean.” Today, expect the full House to formally elect Ryan as Speaker.
One small step to curb tax evasion, one giant missed opportunity. An understaffed IRS has been unable to effectively audit large partnerships, but the budget deal now being debating in Congress attempts to address the problem. TPC’s Steve Rosenthal considers the plan and .concludes, “Auditing and collecting a tax from a large partnership sounds sensible. But the IRS still lacks the resources to identify and pursue complicated tax issues. The new audit regime helps but there is a better solution: Congress should give the IRS more money to do its job, something this budget agreement would not do.”
In Michigan: The road not taken… or repaired. The state’s GOP-led Senate couldn’t muster a vote on a $1.2 billion road plan this week. That’s because the plan included a GOP-led House plan to increase vehicle registration fees by 40 percent. The Senate wants larger fuel tax hikes instead. House Republicans want to limit gas tax increases so they can offset them with an expanded tax credit for homeowners and renters. They can’t do that with vehicle fees. GOP Governor Rick Snyder, for his part, believes there is "strong momentum" to find a comprehensive, "fiscally responsible" solution soon.
What if gun sales were taxed at the federal level? Representative Nydia Velazquez of New York introduces legislation this week that would levy a $100 tax on gun sales. Proceeds would be distributed by the US Department of Justice to support mental health and anti-violence programs. The measure would also bolster federal reporting requirements for stolen or lost guns. The bill has been referred to committee, and will not likely advance.
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