Reasons to Be Thankful for the Tax Deal

by Kevin A. Hassett

While there is much to dislike in the tax bill, I am convinced that it is a better deal for Republicans than they ever could have scored if there had been a Republican in the White House. Think back to how impossible it was to get the Senate moderates, such as Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, to agree to anything when Republicans controlled all the levers of power. Today they are MIA, and one can only say, “Thank goodness.”

Only Nixon could go to China, and only Obama could extend the top rates.

Now we can look ahead to one of two policy paths. Either we have a big fundamental tax reform, or we extend the tax cuts a year at a time, year after year. The latter is the better bet, but the odds of fundamental reform haven’t been this high since 1986.

Kevin A. Hassett is director of economic-policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute.

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