Fred’s Tax Plan

by Jonathan H. Adler

The Wall Street Journal loves Fred Thompson’s (whose Team I am officially on) tax-reform plan. Their editorial begins:

Fred Thompson’s Presidential campaign has been struggling, in part because of a sense that he lacks passion and an agenda. But late last week he unveiled a tax reform that is more ambitious than anything we’ve seen so far from the rest of the GOP field.

The Journal doesn’t think the plan is perfect, but thinks its better than anything we’ve heard from other major candidates.

The two apparent Republican front runners, Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney, should be paying attention. Both have called for tax cuts in general but have dodged any endorsement of the flat tax–presumably because they think it is too politically risky. The politically calculating Mr. Romney has questioned whether the flat tax is “fair.” Mr. Giuliani is more open to the idea, saying the flat tax “would be a lot easier. It would probably bring in a lot more revenue and it would not have some of the burdens on the economy that the massive tax code has.” That’s right, so why not go all the way?

Not everyone loves the Thompson proposal as much as the Journal. Professor Bainbridge thinks it’s too complicated, and wonders whether anyone cares.

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