Taxes | 2016 Republican Presidential Candidates

January 21, 2016   |   Category: Blog   |   Tags:

What do the Republican Candidates Believe About Taxes / Economic Plans?

Ben CarsonBen Carson: Taxes=10% flat tax Tax Code=flat tax

What Ben Carson Says About the Economy

Aides point to the Republican’s experience on corporate boards and his inner circle’s business experience as guideposts for his philosophy.

 

The run-up to Ben Carson’s Republican presidential campaign has been far more about a grassroots groundswell than actual policy ideas. It’s an area of weakness, particularly on the foreign policy front, that Carson has worked behind the scenes to remedy in recent months.

 

On economics, there are a similar number of unanswered questions, most notably who his top advisers will be in the months ahead. Aides do point to Carson’s experience on corporate boards (which he says he will resign from now that he’s running for president) and the business experience of members of his inner circle, such as Jeff Reeter, Carson’s national finance chairman, a managing partner at Northwestern Mutual, as guideposts for his philosophy: the campaign’s economic policy will be business-friendly.

 

Still, Carson’s political resume is admittedly lacking, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t weighed in on policy debates in recent years. Carson and his aides point to the six books he has written, which include a series of policy positions from backing health savings accounts to cover most individual health care needs to ideas around tax reform and government spending.

 

And while pointing to Carson’s books may be a clever sales pitch, it’s also true that Carson has laid out a few top-line policy prescriptions on the economic front over the years—some of which he’s expanded upon recently in speeches and interviews. Carson aides say detailed policy proposals will be released by the campaign in the coming weeks, but until then, here’s a quick rundown.

 

Less fraud and regulation: Government waste and burdensome regulations are oft-cited targets in Carson’s stump speech, a reflection of current Republican orthodoxy.

 

There’s some nuance to his approach, though. For example, Carson is for the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall, the Depression-era statute repealed in part at the end of President Bill Clinton’s administration. That repeal cleared the way for the merging of commercial and investment banks—i.e. allowing institutions that take customer deposits to become one with institutions that trade for profit. There’s a deep and hearty debate about the role the repeal played in fueling the 2008 economic crisis, but Carson has reached his conclusion: It fostered the mega-banks that were considered by the federal government as “too big to fail” in 2008.

 

In an interview with Bloomberg last October, Carson said he “personally was pretty disgusted” with Wall Street’s actions in the lead-up to the financial crisis. And while he said he’s fine with people making money, “when you have situations where you have some guys making two or $300 million and you’ve got all the workers struggling, there is something wrong there.”

 

Biblical tax policy: Carson often speaks in favor of some form of a flat tax in place of the current U.S. tax structure and, in doing so, cites the Bible as evidence of its effectiveness. While he hasn’t settled firmly on a number, he notes 10 percent is a recommendation in the Bible and often mentions something between that and 15 percent as an ideal number. His key point: It must be proportional across all income levels.

 

Free Market: “”If you let the economy work the way it’s supposed to in a free market environment, there’ll be plenty of jobs and people determine their own value by what they know and what they are capable of doing.”

 

“Most powerful stimulus to economic activity: knowledge that you can acquire things & these things will not be confiscated by the government.”

 

Source: www.newsmax.com/N ewsmaxTv/obama-wages-workers-employment/2014/01/31/id/550274#ixzz2vuGrRhWl

 

From Ben Carson’s Website:

 

Jobs: “The job market in America is quite challenging today, and it is well known that in most states, an individual can collect as much if not more from food stamps, housing subsidies and health care subsidies than he can by working a minimum-wage job. If one is only interested in being sustained, accepting many forms of public aid makes a great deal of sense. However, if the goal is to pursue the American dream, taking even minimum-wage jobs makes even more sense.”

 

“I fully understand the uncertainty of the economic environment in which we live, but those with resources should do all they can to support and encourage young people who are stepping out in faith — frequently for the first time — looking for a job. Even a part-time job can lead to the acquisition of important skills. The more we groom our youth for success, the more we secure the future of our nation and the pursuit of happiness for all.”

 

“For decades, China has focused on competing with the U.S. and unfortunately our so-called “leaders” have no plan. I would approach things differently. The U.S. needs to use our natural resources to our advantage. China sure has been doing so. We can compete with China on labor rates because of our efficiency and shipping costs. But frankly, the federal government – particularly the EPA – has been hindering domestic business to the benefit of the Chinese. What if we had a president that actually wanted to help business create jobs, a president that was willing to travel the globe and bring jobs back to the U.S. once our tax code and regulations were job-friendly. I want to be that President. I want to bring business to America, not chase it out of the country.”

 

Sources: http://www.washingtontimes.com/ne ws/2013/dec/3/carson-getting-to-the-top-by-starting-at-the-botto/

 

https://www.facebook.com/realbencarson/posts/504521923047612

 

Taxes: “Many alternative forms of taxation are used throughout the world, but the model that appeals most to me is based on biblical tithing. Under that system, everyone was required to pay one-tenth of their income to the designated authorities of the theocracy. You were not excused if you experienced a crop failure, nor were you asked to pay triple tithes if you had a bumper crop. Under this system, the man with the bumper crop obviously would pay a lot more in tithes than the man who experienced the crop failure.”

 

“Some would say this system would not be fair because it doesn’t hurt the billionaire as much as it hurts the teacher. The problem with this line of reasoning is that no one can be completely objective in determining exactly how much each person should be hurt. Proportionality eliminates this dilemma and simplifies things to the point where we don’t need complex agencies such as the IRS.”

 

Source: http://www.washingtontimes.com/ne ws/2013/jul/17/proportional-taxation-works-because-its-fair-to-ev

 

Unions: “In the early days unions brought about the kind of collective bargaining that resulted in fair wages and reasonable working conditions. With time, many of the union bosses began to concern themselves with power and influence. By threatening strikes to further their causes, they were able to exact excessive wages and benefits from companies such as General Motors, Ford and Chrysler, in the long run crippling these companies and rendering them noncompetitive. Essentially they were strangling the goose that laid the golden egg.”

 

Source: America the Beautiful: What Makes This Country Great – Ben Carson, M.D. with Candy Carson, Zondervan, 2012

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-05-04/what-ben-carson-says-about-the-economy

 

Ben Carson has a big flaw in his plan to tackle U.S. debt

…There’s just one problem: Carson doesn’t really address how he’ll get the debt under control.

 

Carson wants to change the Constitution with an amendment requiring a balanced budget every year, but he provides little detail on how he’ll cut costs or raise more revenue to reach that goal.

 

“I’m thrilled that any candidate is concerned about the debt load,” says Holtz-Eakin, now president of the right-leaning American Action Forum. “But you can’t address it unless you talk about what you’re going to do with entitlement programs.”

 

The bulk of America’s inability to balance the budget “is mainly attributable to significant growth in spending on health care and retirement programs,” according to the latest CBO report.

 

So far, Carson hasn’t addressed either Social Security or Medicare this campaign cycle.

 

He says there are other priorities.

 

“I don’t think we should even talk about entitlements until we fix the economy, and I think fixing the economy is not going to be that difficult,” he said in May.

 

Carson’s thinking has been criticized as naive. Not addressing entitlements means the U.S. is headed for a “debt spiral” in the coming years, Holtz-Eakin says.

 

In addition to not discussing spending cuts, Carson has become the leading champion among 2016 contenders of a flat tax, where all Americans face the same income tax rate.

 

In the first GOP debate on Fox, Carson suggested that rate should be around 10%, much like tithing at church because “I think God is a pretty fair guy.”

 

Carson hasn’t fleshed out enough for a tax policy for experts to really run the numbers. But it’s hard to make the math add up to enough money to pay annual government expenses, let alone start paying down the debt, with a 10% flat tax.

 

http://money.cnn.com/2015/09/10/news/economy/ben-carson-economic-policy/

 


Click on image to enlarge.

Click on image to enlarge.


 

Ted Cruz Approved PortraitTed Cruz: Taxes= 10% flat tax Tax code= flat tax

Ted Cruz’s Tax Plan Hands The 1 Percent A Massive Break

On Thursday evening, Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) released a tax plan that calls for a flat tax of 10 percent that would end up with a benefit for the wealthiest 1 percent that dwarfs what everyone else would get.

 

Cruz’s plan wouldn’t tax the first $36,000 of income for a family of four, but anything made above and beyond that would be taxed at 10 percent. That means that the most a wealthy family could pay on its income or investment would be that same 10 percent, a big drop from the top income tax rate of 39.6 percent and capital gains tax rate of 23.8 percent.

 

The plan would also get rid of many deductions but would keep those for charitable giving and the mortgage interest deduction. The benefit of the mortgage deduction mostly flows to those who make more than $100,000 a year, while the charitable deduction is mostly used by the well off. He would also eliminate the estate tax, which only affects the wealthiest 0.2 percent.

 

Corporations also get a big windfall. While they would lose all of the loopholes they use to lower their on-paper tax rate of 35 percent to about 19 percent, they would still see it drop further to a 16 percent “Business Flat Tax.”

 

Cruz would also offer some relief for lower-income Americans by expanding the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit.

 

But the overwhelming benefit of Cruz’s tax cuts would flow to the richest Americans. While the Tax Foundation’s analysis finds it would cut taxes by 9 percent on average, increasing after-tax income for everyone by at least 14 percent if making some big assumptions about growth, the wealthy still make out with more. The Americans in the poorest 10 percent of the income ladder would get a 15.3 percent boost under these assumptions; the 1 percent gets double that, at 34.2 percent. Without its assumptions, the plan has an even more disparate impact, boosting the poorest Americans’ income by 4.3 percent but the richest 1 percent by 29.6 percent.

 

Cruz says that an important requirement of his plan is that it “spur robust economic growth and job creation.” In an op-ed describing it, he asks readers to “imagine 4.9 million new jobs.” The Tax Foundation says that taking into account the assumption that lower taxes on investment would spur growth, his plan would increase the economy by 13.9 percent and 4.8 million new jobs.

 

But there’s reason to be skeptical of those kinds of assumptions. There is no evidence that high corporate tax rates hurt economic growth, and even corporations that pay higher effective rates create more jobs than those that lower their bills. The same holds true with lowering taxes on wealthy individuals. Post-war growth has generally been higher during times when the top marginal tax rate was higher and lower when rates were much lower; in the 1950s, the top rate was more than 90 percent but growth averaged more than 4 percent.

 

Another problem for Cruz’s plan is that it would reduce tax revenues by $3.6 trillion over a decade, which only drops to $768 billion with generous assumptions about growth.

 

http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2015/10/29/3717404/ted-cruz-tax-plan/

 

Ted Cruz gets specific on ‘abolishing the IRS’

LAS VEGAS — Sen. Ted Cruz has been gunning to abolish the Internal Revenue Service since coming to Washington two years ago.

 

To critics of the Texas Republican in Democratic and GOP circles, it sounds like bluster. The fiery rhetoric garners hearty applause from conservative audiences, particularly since revelations in 2013 that the IRS targeted Tea Party groups for extra scrutiny. But some federal agency is going to have to collect taxes, so Cruz’s vow to shutter the IRS smacks of a politically motivated campaign promise rather than serious policy — at least to some.

 

In an interview with the Washington Examiner on Friday, the 2016 presidential candidate began to put some meat on the bones. Cruz, 44, explained how “abolishing the IRS” fits into his proposal, still being crafted by his team of economic advisors, for wholesale tax reform. This proposal, which Cruz plans to unveil later this year, is a key plank in his domestic agenda for economic growth that he would pursue as president.

 

“When it comes to jobs and growth and opportunity, the two most effective levers that the federal government has to facilitate small businesses creating new jobs, are tax reform and regulatory reform,” Cruz said late last week, during a 20-minute discussion while on a brief swing through Las Vegas. “I am campaigning on a flat tax that would allow every American to fill out his or her taxes on a post card that allow us to abolish the IRS.”…

 

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/ted-cruz-gets-specific-on-abolishing-the-irs/article/2563631

 

From Sen. Cruz’s website

Economy

Sen. Cruz is an enthusiastic advocate for pro-growth policies to create more opportunities for all Americans.

 

A key component of Sen. Cruz’s pro-growth agenda is the American Energy Renaissance Act, which empowers the private sector to create more jobs and removes federal impediments to exploration, development, and trade.

 

Additionally, Sen. Cruz is leading the fight to protect the Internet as a platform for innovation, defending it from job-killing taxes and regulations and the corrosive influence of undemocratic nations. He is a firm believer that the constitutional rights of American citizens should apply to activities conducted offline and online alike.

 

He has consistently voted against raising the debt ceiling, insisting that any debt ceiling increase be accompanied by structural reforms, such as a balanced budget amendment, to better control the way Washington spends money. Sen. Cruz believes that Washington’s out-of-control spending robs prosperity from our children and grandchildren, and that economic growth necessitates a smaller, less regulation-heavy federal government.

carly-fiorinaCarly Fiorina: Taxes=Reduce Tax Code= IRS

If Ex-HP Chief Carly Fiorina Was President, Here’s What Would Happen to the U.S. Economy

 

While Republican Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina has yet to provide a detailed economic plan, her controversial tenure as CEO at Hewlett-Packard from 1999-2005 as well as statements she’s made on the campaign trail paint a picture of what the U.S. economy would look like with Fiorina in the White House.

 

Her main targets — should she win the Republican primary, the 2016 general election and convince Congress to back her — appear to be a complex tax code, laws with cumbersome regulations such as the Dodd-Frank Act and Obamacare, and crony capitalism…

 

Lower Every Tax Rate, Close Every Loophole

The crux of Fiorina’s economic plan so far is reducing the 70,000-page U.S. tax code to 3 pages, but unlike her rivals, she has yet to say how many tax brackets she would have and what the rates would be. Trump, for example, said he plans to lower the number of brackets from seven to four and that the new rates would be 0%, 10%, 20% and 25%.

 

“Most of these deductions, loopholes and complexities actually benefit the wealthy, the powerful, the well-connected,” Fiorina said.

 

As a starting principle, “a lot of people would agree with that,” said Joseph Cordes, an economics professor at George Washington University and former director of the Congressional Budget Office. “What people are fighting, however, is once you get beyond the general principle, it’s very hard to figure out exactly how the details of that might work.”

 

During an appearance on Fox News with Sean Hannity, Fiorina proposed a three-pronged attack to meet her goal.

 

First, she would not fill jobs in the federal government that are vacated by retiring Baby Boomers. By her estimate, that would eliminate tens of thousands of taxpayer-supported federal government salaries. It sounds great on the campaign stump, but considering that the 2014 budget was more than $3 trillion dollars, eliminating tens of thousands of jobs is unlikely to make much of a difference…

 

Fiorina’s second tactic is establishing zero-based budgeting, under which federal agencies could no longer assume the previous year’s expenditures as a starting point for their spending plans and would have to justify programs from the ground up, potentially finding their entire operations on the chopping block each year…

 

Fix Obamacare

Fiorina has argued that Obamacare — intended to make health insurance more accessible to low-income residents — has only made health insurance companies more powerful, in party by spurring mergers. Because the laws were written with the input of many health professionals and insurance providers, Fiorina argues that the relationship between the government and private insurers has never been cozier.

 

Given the relatively short period that Obamacare has been operational, the effects of a repeal might be less devastating than if people had been relying on it for decades…

 

Fiorina has consistently said that the relationship between big business and government is too close. In a remarkable show of self-awareness, she acknowledged that during her time at the helm of a Fortune 500 company, she could exert influence over the political process to block proposed regulations that might hurt her business.

 

Meanwhile, Fiorina says, small businesses lack the structural and financial resources to navigate and influence the political process…

 

In total, the U.S. economy with Fiorina in the White House might look a bit like it did during George W. Bush’s second term, although the mix of winners and losers might be different.

Governor_John_KasichJohn Kasich: Taxes=Reduce Tax Code=IRS

John Kasich Outlines Broad Economic Agenda in New Hampshire

“To keep it balanced, I will start the process to amend our constitution, to require Washington to balance its budget every single year like states and like families in America,” he said.

 

Kasich cites his record on the campaign trail as evidence that he can get the job done, noting he “was the chief architect of first balanced budget in a generation,” while he served as chairman of the House Budget committee in the 1990’s and wrote three balanced budgets as Governor of Ohio.

 

“It wasn’t easy, folks,” he said. “You step on a lot of toes when you shake things up from top to bottom.”…

 

Kasich also proposed reducing the number of tax brackets from seven to three. His plan includes cutting the top rate from 39.6 percent to 28 percent, increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit by 10 percent, eliminating the death tax, and reducing long-term capital gains rates to 15 percent. He proposes cutting the top business rate from 35 percent to 25 percent…

 

James Pethokoukis, an economic policy analyst at the conservative-center American Enterprise Institute, says Kasich’s tax proposals won’t necessarily set him apart from other Republican presidential candidates.

 

“That is sort of what you’ve seen from the other plans: Christie, Bush, several others. In a way it is a very cookie cutter tax plan,” he said, adding that losing revenue through the tax cuts could make it harder for Kasich to keep his first promise to keep the budget balanced.

 

“He’s going to do it through Medicare reform, through freezing non-defense discretionary spending, which is already done a lot because of the sequester deal … by freezing it, it will be even lower. It will be really at historically low levels.”…

 

Kasich’s tax outline met swift denunciation from Democrats in New Hampshire, who claim the proposals will primarily benefit the wealthiest Americans.

 

“Kasich may try to paint himself as a different kind of Republican, but his plan to slash Social Security and programs that help the economy while giving tax cuts to the wealthiest proves he’s just another Republican who refuses to look out for the middle class,” Ray Buckley, Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party, said in a statement…

 

Kasich also proposed reducing the number of tax brackets from seven to three. His plan includes cutting the top rate from 39.6 percent to 28 percent, increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit by 10 percent, eliminating the death tax, and reducing long-term capital gains rates to 15 percent. He proposes cutting the top business rate from 35 percent to 25 percent…

 

James Pethokoukis, an economic policy analyst at the conservative-center American Enterprise Institute, says Kasich’s tax proposals won’t necessarily set him apart from other Republican presidential candidates.

 

“That is sort of what you’ve seen from the other plans: Christie, Bush, several others. In a way it is a very cookie cutter tax plan,” he said, adding that losing revenue through the tax cuts could make it harder for Kasich to keep his first promise to keep the budget balanced.

 

“He’s going to do it through Medicare reform, through freezing non-defense discretionary spending, which is already done a lot because of the sequester deal … by freezing it, it will be even lower. It will be really at historically low levels.”

 

Kasich speaks frequently on the campaign trail about his fights over reforming the Pentagon in Congress, mentioning his battles to block the B-2 bomber, but maintained that although he wants non-defense discretionary spending frozen, he wants to increase defense spending $102 billion (17 percent) between 2017 and 2025.

 

“As president I will look across that river every day to make sure that money we spend will go to help our men and women in the military and not bureaucracies,” he said.

 

Kasich’s tax outline met swift denunciation from Democrats in New Hampshire, who claim the proposals will primarily benefit the wealthiest Americans.

 

“Kasich may try to paint himself as a different kind of Republican, but his plan to slash Social Security and programs that help the economy while giving tax cuts to the wealthiest proves he’s just another Republican who refuses to look out for the middle class,” Ray Buckley, Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party, said in a statement.

 

Kasich’s proposals on Thursday don’t go into detail about how he would reform social security, but he was asked in Nashua how the federal program would need to be restructured, and mentioned that he would be releasing more detail in the future, but that people’s benefits may need to be reduced.

 

“Social security is so sensitive. It has to be stabilized,” he said, also mentioning, “We are going to have to work with some Democrats who know this needs to be fixed.

 

Social security and other entitlements are necessary portions of proposals for a balanced budget, but Pethokoukis noted that there’s a reason why presidential candidates might not release those details at the same time. “When you roll it out at the same time as you roll out the tax plan, some might say ‘well gee you are cutting social security to pay for your tax cuts.’ Candidates certainly don’t like that association, and that might be one leap someone might make.”

 

Kasich’s agenda also includes transportation reform, including returning the federal gas tax to the states. “You keep your money and you fix your roads the way you want to,” he said. “Keep it right here in New Hampshire for what you need.”…

 

http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/john-kasich-outlines-broad-economic-agenda-new-hampshire-n445491

Marco Rubio Official PortraitMarco Rubio: Taxes=Reduce Tax Code= IRS

Marco Rubio on Thursday unveiled his economic plan, focusing on slashing taxes for businesses and increasing child tax credits to build an American economy that he said would be “even grander and richer in opportunity than ever before.”…

 

…He harped on what he said was a need to lower the corporate income tax rate, a common refrain among other GOP candidates including Rand Paul and Jeb Bush, offering a plan to reduce it from 35% to 25%. For small businesses, he wants to allow every dollar invested in a small company to be expensed as to lower the tax burden for owners.

 

Rubio, the son of immigrants, wants to increase the child tax credit from $1,000 a year to $2,500 a year per child.

 

The Florida senator, citing the Tax Foundation, said his plan would grow the economy by 15%, grow wages by 12.5% and create almost 2.7 million full-time jobs over 10 years…

 

“I think the most egregious thing about Rubio coming to Michigan is the fact that he has the audacity to do so in Detroit when, if he had had his way, Detroit would have gone bankrupt. Without the auto bailout, this state would be in a depression,” Dillon said. “Under Rubio’s plan, we would have been left for dead. Rubio and other GOP candidates have a plan that favors the rich over the middle class.”

 

http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/20/politics/marco-rubio-economic-plan/

483208412-real-estate-tycoon-donald-trump-flashes-the-thumbs-up.jpg.CROP.promo-xlarge2Donald Trump: Taxes=Reduce   Tax Code= IRS

Will The Trump Tax Plan Give Us 6% Economic Growth?

Donald Trump released his tax reform plan today, and he’s quite confident that it will boost economic performance. He even went so far as to say that the plan might result in 6 percent economic growth (note: the historical average real GDP growth rate is about half that pace).

 

Is the plan that good? In a word, no. There are some powerful pro-growth inducements in there, but they definitely left some economic growth levers un-pulled.

 

Elements of the Trump plan that help growth

Cutting the business tax rate to 15 percent. The United States has the highest tax rates on business profits in the developed world. The tax rate on corporations is 39 percent (when states are, properly, included). It’s even worse for unincorporated businesses, many of whom also compete globally, which face a tax rate of nearly 50 percent including states.

 

The developed nation average is only 25 percent, according to the OECD. That number keeps falling as more and more countries adopt competitive tax systems and leave us behind.

 

The Trump plan cuts the federal business rate for all forms of business to 15 percent. That would immediately give us one of the most competitive tax rates in the world. We would be essentially tied with the United Kingdom, and ahead of places like China, Japan, Canada, Mexico, France, and Germany.

 

Eliminate the Obamacare surtax on saving and investment. In Obamacare, there are 20 new or higher taxes. One of them creates a 3.8 percentage point surtax on savings and investment. As a result, our 20 percent capital gains and dividends rate is really 23.8 percent. Trump eliminates this surtax, which means a modest cut in the rate back down to 20 percent.

 

Kill the death tax. The Trump plan eliminates the estate or “death” tax, which is currently 40 percent on estates valued at more than $5-$6 million. An estate tax is a redundant layer of tax on savings, and eliminating it helps grow capital stock and keep the seed corn of economic growth in the soil where it belongs.

 

These three tax cuts alone make the plan bullishly pro-growth. There is little doubt that it will result in higher GDP growth right out of the gate. But the negatives and the missed opportunities limit that growth upside from “stratospheric” to “very high.”

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/ryanellis/2015/09/28/will-the-trump-tax-plan-give-us-six-percent-economic-growth/

 

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