Van Hollen's Liberal 'Action Plan' Is Nothing but Old Ideas and Failed Policies

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Posted by Alexander Hendrie on Monday, January 12th, 2015, 5:27 PM PERMALINK


Earlier today Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) outlined the latest House Democrat economic plan, which like previous proposals centers around a “massive transfer of wealth.” 

In fact, the supposed “stark shift in messaging” is nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to promote the same economic policies that the left have continually pushed down the throats of American taxpayers.

The left needs to realize that it doesn’t matter how they say it - income redistribution and higher taxes are not new ideas. They have failed in the past and they will not help hardworking Americans reach their potential.

Just as President Obama said last October, policies of income redistribution were on the ballot in November and were soundly rejected by the American people.  Now, a recent poll found that voters want the Republican led Congress to set the national agenda, not the President.  This latest proposal proves that liberals are out of ideas and have resorted to recycling rejected policies. 

In contrast, conservatives have floated genuinely innovative ideas that would create more opportunity for the American people. One plan, proposed by Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Mike Lee (R-UT) would implement reforms to simplify the inefficient tax code by removing a range of outdated provisions to provide much needed relief to middle class families. Specifically, the plan would consolidate income tax rates into two brackets (15% and 35%) and eliminate many overly complex deductions. It would also encourage corporations to keep jobs in America by lowering the corporate tax rate to a more globally competitive rate.

If liberals are serious about helping the middle class they should follow the lead of reform conservatives and put forward their own new, innovative, pro-growth ideas instead of reusing failed policies that pick winners and losers. 

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Rich

If real tax reform were the goal, they should adopt the Fair Tax bill that is STILL sitting in Congress, or at least go with a flat tax. Fair Tax would eliminate the IRS and reduce the tax code to a few pages, as well as eliminating the need to file income tax returns. Who wouldn't want THAT!!

Peeping Obot

Forget it. You will never get these knuckleheads to give the taxpayer any kind of tax relief. It's to profitable for them


Most Americans Are Living Paycheck to Paycheck During Obama Recovery

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Posted by Damien Salamacha on Friday, January 9th, 2015, 1:49 PM PERMALINK


While President Obama tries to convince the American people that the economy is back on track a new report indicates that a majority of Americans are now living paycheck to paycheck.  In Obama’s post-recession recovery, nearly 62% of Americans do not have emergency savings to cover unexpected expenses.  Faced with an emergency, Americans say they would raise the money by reducing spending elsewhere (26%), borrowing from family and/or friends (16%) or using credit cards (12%).

Additionally, homeowners and renters are finding it difficult to meet rising rents and mortgage payments.  Over half of Americans have had to make at least one major sacrifice to cover the cost of their rent or mortgage over the last three years.  Sacrifices that include getting a second job, deferring saving for retirement, cutting back on medical care, going further into debt, or choosing to move to a cheaper, but less safe neighborhood.  

Oblivious to the circumstances of most Americans, President Obama speaking Wednesday in Detroit said, “As a country, we have every right to be proud of what we have got to show for that hard work,” Mr. Obama said. “America’s resurgence is real. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.” He later followed up by saying, “One of my new year’s resolutions is to make sure more Americans…feels like they’re coming back. And there is no doubt…that America is coming back.”

An immediate step the President can take to improve the economy and strengthen the middle-class is to sign legislation authorizing the construction of the Keystone Pipeline. Unfortunately, President Obama has already threatened to veto such legislation.   Even President Obama’s State Department has concluded that “during construction, proposed Project spending would support approximately 42,100 jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and approximately $2 billion in earnings throughout the United States.”

Unfortunately, the President is too ideologically driven and disconnected from the middle-class to adopt policies such as Keystone which would have an immediate positive impact on the economy.  The House and Senate Republicans will send the Keystone legislation to the President, along with other measures to strengthen the middle-class and create jobs.  It is now up to the President whether he can work with Congress to strengthen the American economy.  

Photo Credit: 
Steve Jurvetson

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JD

Hey Grover, How come your not complaining about what's happening in Michigan, The republican tri fecta here wants to raise the sales tax 1%...I guess your biased....but then again they did lower the business tax 1.2 billion....guess how much they plan on raising with the sales tax increase....1.2 billion

Diana

People have been living paycheck to paycheck since the 80's.

Diana

Easier said than done!


The Grover Norquist Show: Leave Vapers Alone!

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Posted by Paul Blair on Wednesday, January 7th, 2015, 5:31 PM PERMALINK


As I've written before, the top target for tax increases at the state level in 2014 was electronic cigarettes and vapor products. Politicians, looking to protect their monopoly on cigarette sales and compensate for declining tobacco revenues again have e-cigarettes in their sights in 2015. 

Raising the cost of products that will unquestionably save lives makes little sense at face value. To do so in the name of filling budget holes, "protecting children," or simply expanding the definition of tobacco products is even worse. 

Today, I sat down with Grover Norquist to discuss these new innovative products and some of the states where politicians will try to raise taxes on e-cigarettes in 2015. 

What do you think? Should states raise taxes on electronic cigarettes? 

Consider supporting our efforts to fight back with a generous gift today

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Paul Blair

Do you have a high school diploma?

Ed

Ecigs have helped me walk away from a 15 year, two pack a day cigarette habit. It has saved my life and these people want to tax this great alternative out of existence. They don't care about our health, just the money they can take from us. It isn't right.

IMSiegfried

I quit smoking after 35 years thanks to e-cigs. I am so happy to be free from smoking.
My best friend also switched after 35 years, and my 82 year old mother who smoked for as long as I can remember also quit smoking thanks to e-cigs.
It was a real eye-opener for me to learn that governments and so-called "public health" doesn't care about my health but rather the money states make off of smokers.

The average tax on a pack of cigarettes is $2.80. It's clear they need to make up the lost revenue due to less cigarettes being sold. I will fight for my right to vape for as long as I must.


Obama To Veto Keystone Pipeline

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Posted by Chris Prandoni on Wednesday, January 7th, 2015, 4:11 PM PERMALINK


One of the first moves of the new Congress is passing legislation that would approve the Keystone XL Pipeline for construction. Keystone, you may remember, is a pipeline that would carry over 800,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta, Canada to American refiners in Texas and Oklahoma. Unfortunately, President Obama has announced that he will veto the bill allowing construction workers to be begin a project that has a 72 percent approval rating.

In a letter to the House of Representatives, ATR president Grover Norquist debunks some of the Left’s canards and highlights Keystone’s job creation numbers:

The State Department’s own 2014 Environmental Impact Statement estimated that “during construction, proposed Project spending would support approximately 42,100 jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and approximately $2 billion in earnings throughout the United States.” Jobs are good.

Next, the State Department rebutted the misinformation propagated by President Obama’s liberal base about Keystone’s impact on oil sands production: “Approval or denial of any one crude oil transport project, including the proposed Project [Keystone Pipeline], remains unlikely to significantly impact the rate of extraction in the oil sands, or the continued demand for heavy crude oil at refineries in the U.S.”

Canadian oil sands will be produced, refined, and used. The only real question is how will this oil get to market? Will Canadian crude be shipped by pipeline to American refiners? It should. Pipelines are the most efficient way to transport oil and American refiners are the cleanest in the world.

The good folks over at the Senate Republican Policy Committee (RPC) have an excellent graphic illuminating exactly what types of jobs the State Department thinks will be created. 

RPC goes on to debunk many of the Left’s claims about Keystone, like its construction will increase greenhouse gas emissions:

§  The State Department concluded in January 2014 that the project is “unlikely to significantly impact the rate of extraction in the oil sands or the continued demand for heavy crude oil at refineries in the United States.” So greenhouse gas emissions associated with these activities would remain unchanged.

§  Even without the pipeline, and with low oil prices, oil sands will continue to be developed. “The dominant drivers of oil sands development are more global than any single infrastructure project,” the State Department reported. “Oil sands production and investment could slow or accelerate depending on oil price trends, regulations, and technological developments, but the potential effects of those factors on the industry’s rate of expansion should not be conflated with the more limited effects of individual pipelines.”  

§  The State Department also reported that transmission of oil through the pipeline would reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions by 28 to 42 percent compared with alternative transportation options.

 Unfortunately, appeals using logic, science, or economics are lost on the current Administration. The House and Senate will send the Keystone legislation to the President and he will veto it. It is up to us to try and pick off enough Democrats to override the Obama’s veto. 

Photo Credit: 
shannonpatrick17

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Norquist And Gleason Point Out Pitfalls of Broadband Reclassification

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Posted by Cassandra Carroll on Wednesday, January 7th, 2015, 2:50 PM PERMALINK


The FCC is currently deliberating over whether it should reclassify broadband service as a public utility under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934, a move that would raise taxes for close to 90% of Americans, discourage innovation and investment in broadband infrastructure, and could make internet access prohibitively expensive for many of those who already struggle to afford it. ATR’s Grover Norquist and Patrick Gleason break down the costs for the average taxpayer in their Reuters piece:

Under this decision to reclassify broadband, Americans would face a host of new state and local taxes and fees that apply to public utilities. These new levies, according to the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), would total $15 billion annually. On average, consumers would pay an additional $67 for landline broadband, and $72 for mobile broadband each year, according to PPI’s calculations, with charges varying from state to state.

Not only would reclassification under Title II make internet access even more costly, Norquist and Gleason also point out the potential consequences for the economy as a whole, as well as the disincentives for investment and innovation that this New Deal-era regulation would impose.

The telecommunications industry has invested more than $1.2 trillion on broadband infrastructure since 1996. As a result, roughly 87 percent of Americans have access to broadband. It would be foolish for government to discourage the significant investment required to maintain, expand and improve this infrastructure by subjecting broadband to circa 1930s regulation. Subjecting Internet service providers to such onerous rules would depress innovation and penalize Web users. Not only would higher taxes and fees leave individuals, families, and employers with less disposable income, a wealth of research indicates it would be bad for the economy.

The FCC is poised to make a final decision early this year. Let’s all hope they don’t choose in favor of crippling the internet and its users with new taxes and discouraged innovation.

Photo Credit: 
DonkeyHotey

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The Rich Irony of Using the Sony Hack to Attack Efforts to Fight Online Theft

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Posted by Lorenzo Montanari on Tuesday, January 6th, 2015, 6:02 PM PERMALINK


Without getting into a thorny discussion about the various problems of the much-pilloried “Stop Online Piracy Act” and its senate cousin back in 2012, it’s worth looking at how the detractors of intellectual property rights are using the results of the Sony hack to thwart any ongoing efforts by content creators to protect their property under current laws.  The stunningly ironic story goes something like this: various hackers steal documents at Sony that show movie studios (and the Motion Picture Association of America) are working with state attorneys general to try to prevent their stuff from getting stolen.  You’d think that A proved the need for B, even if you don’t like the particular approach of the movie companies. Instead, those who take a dim view of intellectual property--or at least its robust protection--have now taken to calling this strategy (again revealed by stolen data) “zombie SOPA” in a reference to the breathlessly maligned “Stop Online Piracy Act” of several years ago which set a new record for irritating anyone who uses the Internet.

Predictably, many news outlets then breathlessly reported on the resurrection of the Internet’s favorite law to hate. But, before you get swept up in the “iIndignation”, note that The New York Times was forced to print a correction on December 29, stating:

An article on Thursday about Sony Pictures’ release of “The Interview” online following terror threats misstated the nature of efforts by the Motion Picture Association of America to push for new antipiracy measures. The industry group is currently seeking to enforce existing laws to thwart piracy, rather than pushing for passage of a bill on the issue.

The NYT has to print a correction? I wish I could I say that I’m shocked….

This is a classic example of something done in Washington every day; attempting to staple something some interest groups oppose to something everybody hates.  No one at MPAA or Sony is looking to resurrect SOPA or PIPA.   Pretty much uniquely in Washington, we know this to be a true fact because everybody has seen all their emails.   They are pursuing an effort (love it or hate it) through state attorneys general to defend their property more aggressively using current law.  It’s not SOPA.  Or zombie SOPA. 

While this kind of conflation, as noted above, is standard operating DC PR procedure, in this case it’s almost too much to bear, because the whole basis for the effort is again, documents illegally stolen.  This means that there is now a campaign online  (“#zombieSOPA”!) being run by consultants and the usual detractors of copyright and other intellectual property opposing the enforcement of current laws, entirely based on stolen data.

“These guys are trying to stop people stealing their stuff!! How outrageous…by the way we know this because someone stole all their stuff.”

ATR didn’t endorse SOPA/PIPA and recognized its problems.  But the fact is that there are problems with the incentives that exist today for creating content when everything in the Internet age is so easily stolen.  If there is one thing that the Sony hack (just like the Apple hack before it) proves it’s that.  The last thing the Sony hack proves is that there is no problem with people stealing stuff online.  To use the hack itself in claiming such a thing almost crosses into self-parody.

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Georgia Transportation Report Recommends Massive New Tax Hikes

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Posted by Paul Blair on Tuesday, January 6th, 2015, 6:45 AM PERMALINK


A newly released joint study from the Georgia state House and Senate claims that the state doesn’t spend close to enough money on transportation maintenance and infrastructure and that more revenue is needed in both the short and long term. The Georgia Department of Transportation’s strategic 20-year plan calls for $160 billion in spending, compared to a projected $86 billion in transportation revenue projections and commitments. Essentially, the report concludes that “the state has a funding gap of $1.0 billion to $1.5 billion annually.”

An infrastructure consultant went even further, nothing that in order to address “the full universe of transportation needs, including establishment of passenger rail systems,” the state would need between $3.9 and $5.4 billion annually.

For comparison, Georgia’s entire 2015 budget is $20.8 billion.

At least they admit that these figures represent “significant new costs for the state” and taxpayers.

The reports recommendations are as follows:

  • Dedicate the final 25% of the sales tax on gasoline to transportation projects. The fact that this hasn’t always been the law is baffling. The report projects this will yield between $180-185 million annually for transportation spending.

  • Convert the sales tax of 4% on gasoline to an equivalent, stable, per gallon tax. Though the report notes that should be about 22-25 cents per gallon, someone making that calculation miscalculated. That recommendation would constitute a tax increase (as it is above 4%). 4% at present prices would actually be roughly 9 cents per gallon in Georgia. Regardless, this idea makes little sense if the state hopes to have gas tax revenue keep pace with gas prices and inflation (which a sales tax on gasoline permits).

  • Index the gas tax to inflation with automatic tax increases unless the price of gasoline falls. The report projects this would yield about $60 million annually.

  • Raise the state sales tax by 1%. This would equate to a $1.4 billion tax hike annually, fhitting low and middle-income consumers hardest.

  • Raise the gas tax by 10 cents per gallon. This would equate to a $600 million tax hike annually.

  • Establish a hybrid car tax increase. While punishing people for driving hybrids may be amusing, in the case of the report’s suggestion it still results in a tax increase of $200-$300 per year for alternative fuel vehicles.

The report also includes vague calls for more spending on light rail and transit, $3.6 billion in new bonds, and new tolls.

This laundry list of mostly bad ideas and tax increases should concern taxpayers, especially three years after voters rejected one of the largest components of these suggestions: the T-SPLOST sales tax hike of 2012.

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Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller Pushing Tax Hike on Electronic Cigarettes

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Posted by Paul Blair on Monday, January 5th, 2015, 4:55 PM PERMALINK


State Representatives Ed Clere (R-Ind.) and Charlie Brown (R-Ind.) are cosponsoring a bill in the legislative session that begins Tuesday that would raise taxes on electronic cigarettes. These efforts coincide with Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller’s campaign to tax and regulate the products as well.

According to Rep. Clere, the tax “would be 24 percent of whatever the wholesale price is,”which would mean electronic cigarettes and vapor products would be subjected to the same taxes as smokeless tobacco and other tobacco products.

As we’ve noted before, electronic cigarettes should not be taxed the same as traditional tobacco. These products do not contain tobacco and should not be treated as such.

Attorney General Zoeller is spearheading efforts in the state to regulate and tax the products. In his attempt to “save the kids” from electronic cigarettes, Zoeller (and legislators who support the Clere-Brown legislation) are using the heavy hand of government to pick winners and losers. By raising the cost of these products, the legislature would create an incentive for people to continue smoking traditional tobacco.

An NBC affiliate in NBC pointed out, “The hope is the price increase will make the product less appealing to price-conscious youth.” Unfortunately, this narrow-minded approach neglects that adult smokers are overwhelmingly low and middle-income consumers, many of which spend a quarter of their income on cigarettes. Despite the fact that four out of five people who smoke want to quit, not all are able to and price increases on effective smoking cessation devices like electronic cigarettes make little sense.

It’s not just kids who may decide to opt for cigarettes instead; it’s also all of the smokers in Indiana who may want to finally quit their unhealthy habit. This is bad tax policy and will hurt decades of efforts to curb smoking.

The free market has provided a solution to decades of failures by public health advocates to get people to quit smoking; electronic cigarettes and vapor products are working, unlike tax hikes and public service announcements. Using the heavy hand of the government to keep smokers smoking cigarettes is a distasteful approach to tax policy, especially in an overwhelmingly Republican-run state like Indiana.

We urge the legislature to reject tax hikes on electronic cigarettes.  

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Lisabelle

Thank You Americans for Tax Reform. As an Electronic Cigarette user for 4 years smoke-free, as an artist, (not made out of money), as a devoted advocate, a member of casaa.org, vapingmilitia.org and many groups that are fighting these attacks and false allegations about targeting youths, who they say, but can't prove are daily users of Vaping, claiming it is a gateway to terrible tasting smoking of cigarettes. I commend you and am very much in favor of NO TAXES except sales tax on a life saving alternative to smoking. This is a life and death issue for adults that have smoked for over 15 years... long enough to know they want to quit. You hit the nail on the head. I hope we can stop this.

Robert Boeninger

I think BEFORE any more legislature passes in Indiana lets discuss the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission and its cover up of prosecutors and judges involved in drug cartel actions, prison breaks, murder of clients, estate fraud, international bank fraud, kidnapping, child slavery, contempt and many many other crimes by a group of LaPorte County judges attorneys and others whom have been on a 20 plus year spree of murder and theft of tens of millions of dollars and have been caught but refused to be processed by all levels of law enforcement up to the FBI. Not to mention relations of LaPorte County head prosecutor and individuals in Mexico involved in drug smuggling and murder of over 3000 teenagers and young adults for medical research connected to Masonic members. This is just the tip of the iceberg as 100's of millions have been defrauded by INDOT for their contractors protected by Indiana politicians. You are about to see the truth as our next actions in Supreme Court in other venues will prove the majority of above and ask to close the Indiana Supreme Court during investigation.


Electronic Cigarettes Should Not Be Taxed as Tobacco Products

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Posted by Paul Blair on Sunday, January 4th, 2015, 8:00 AM PERMALINK


As nineteen states begin the 2015 legislative session this week, a hot topic of debate will be what to do about a new innovative technology that is gaining popularity among smokers looking for a way to quit. Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) and vapor products have grown to a 2.5 billion dollar industry over the past few years, a concern for big government folks who want a piece of the action. 

As the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Democrats figure out how to regulate and tax the products, states haven't sat around waiting to see what happens in Washington, D.C.

Countless pieces of legislation in 2014 lumped e-cigarettes and vapor products into a the taxable category of “other tobacco products.” This would have subjected them to taxes as high as 95 percent of wholesale cost, which is how they are taxed in Minnesota. Every single one of the 2014 bills failed with the exception of one signed into law in North Carolina, which imposed a much smaller (but higher than present law) tax of 5 cents per mL of liquid per product (about 2.5 cents per e-cigarette).

E-cigarettes have been found to be far less harmful than traditional tobacco cigarettes. These products don't contain tobacco. That’s precisely why e-cigarettes should not be subjected to the same level of taxation as cigarettes, cigars, or any other type of smokeless tobacco. Tax increases that raise the price of e-cigarettes for consumers will discourage smokers from switching, an illogical act for anyone concerned about public health. State budget shortfalls fueled by overspending problems should never justify tax increases that will hurt decades of efforts to curb smoking in the United States.

Unfortunately, at least seven states already have bills pre-filed or drafted that would raise taxes on e-cigarettes. The governors of Washington and Utah have included tax hikes on the products in their official budgets to the legislature. The Attorney General of Indiana is pushing the legislature to raise taxes as well. Americans for Tax Reform opposes all tax increases and will work to defeat them as they arise.

Join our email list on the right hand side of this page or click here to contribute to our efforts to fight e-cigarette and vapor tax hikes in 2015. 

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arebel1

Like any legislative body cares about the effects of smoking! All they care about is revenue, if any "new" industry grows to 2.5 billion, they are going to jump on it!

charlie

As a former smoker, all thanks to vaping, thanks to you for taking this stand.

Mark Skikus

As a former smoker I say no. If you Tax vaping you better tax a lot of veggies... Vaping was a lifesaver for me....


Over 40 Free Market Groups Outline Requirements for New CBO Director


Posted by ATR on Monday, December 29th, 2014, 4:51 PM PERMALINK


Today Americans for Tax Reform and over 40 other free market groups and individuals sent a letter to House and Senate Leadership outlining essential characteristics when considering a new CBO director:

Dear Leaders in the House and Senate,

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) in recent years has employed inaccurate and opaque models that impacted political debates and policy outcomes, ultimately to the country's detriment. For example, as Congress debated the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, CBO adopted a mode of analysis that incorporated Jonathan Gruber’s model, using that to score the legislation to justify its passage and to assess its impact. Neither policymakers nor the public were given sufficient information about the model and scoring process, and Professor Gruber himself has acknowledged that this scoring process was manipulated to achieve a desired result. 

The CBO has also consistently used a neo-Keynesian approach to economic analysis, assuming that economic growth will not be negatively affected by the size of government or rate of taxation. By disregarding how incentives change the way people behave, and disregarding the effect of high taxes and government spending in discouraging economic productivity and growth, the CBO has been inherently biased toward larger government and more public spending.  In short, while the CBO used a dynamic scoring model—one that takes into account how incentives impact behavior—on rare occasion, they used it far too sparingly.

To provide the American people with better information and a more thorough understanding of how proposed policies impact economic growth and their own pocketbooks, CBO needs a new director who would use dynamic scoring more broadly, provide more transparency about models and assumptions, and constantly assess which models provided the most accurate assessments in the past so that methodologies can be refined for the future.

As the Chairmen of the House and Senate Budget Committees submit recommendations to the Speaker of the House and the President Pro Tempore of the Senate for the next CBO director, they should seek someone with a strong research background, sufficient so that he or she will have credibility with both Republicans and Democrats, real world experience with forecasts, and significant management experience commensurate with the importance of leading an agency with such critical responsibilities. Most importantly, however, the candidate must have a commitment to improving CBO, and a willingness to engage with the Joint Committee on Taxation to provide CBO with better input and a clear mandate to make the changes needed (such as greater use of dynamic scoring) so CBO can provide more accurate information to legislators and the American people. 

In addition we suggest the following:

  • The candidate must be willing to examine and challenge the current method of economic analysis, as well as the logic and math that drive the models, and look objectively at past accuracy in terms of the predicted outcomes of different fiscal policies.  This analysis ought to inform the methods and practices of CBO moving forward. 

  • The candidate must also strengthen compliance with CBO’s obligation to disclose the judgments and assumptions embedded in their models, whether through greater oversight or disclosure within their reports, particularly with regard to their macros, multipliers, and assumptions, and the causal interactions between assumptions.  This is critical so that other analysts, legislators, the media and public can better put CBO's conclusions in context. 

  • An honest analysis such as described would inevitably lead to the elimination of the use of positive multipliers for Keynesian spending programs.  It would also increasingly rely on an improved dynamic scoring system to take into account the effects on behavior from increased government spending, taxes and marginal taxes, deficits, and the disincentives that can result from transfer payments and entitlements to individuals to work, save, and invest.

  • The new CBO director should also seek to provide greater insight into how public policies impact individual Americans, by creating and publishing distributional tables that show the effects of spending programs, to balance out the partial picture provided by the Joint Committee’s existing distributional tables of tax programs.

Ultimately, Congress must reform the budget process, and specifically the 1974 Budget Act and current statutory requirement to use the current services baseline, thereby distorting what actually constitutes an increase or a cut over previous year spending. 

  • Until such reforms occur, the new CBO director can help move Congress toward more transparent, effective, real world budgeting both by providing alternate budgets that approximate real world Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, as well as by expanding the realistic spending scenarios beyond the current “alternative baseline,” making visible and transparent in budget reports the spending requirements embedded in, or hidden in, authorizing legislation, above and beyond the appropriations language, that will affect actual spending requirements and consequent costs.

Congress can—indeed it must—do all that it can to ensure that Americans have all the facts about how policies emanating from Washington will impact the economy and people like them. We urge you to appoint a CBO director dedicated to this mission.

Sincerely,   

Heather Higgins
Independent Women’s Voice

Sabrina Schaeffer
Independent Women’s Forum

Grover Norquist
Americans for Tax Reform

Ken Hoagland
Restore America's Voice

Phil Kerpen
American Commitment

Gregory T. Angelo
Log Cabin Republicans

Andrew Langer
Institute for Liberty

Grace-Marie Turner
Galen Institute

Brian Baker
Ending Spending

David Wallace
Restore America's Mission

Donna Hamilton
Virginians for Quality Healthcare

Sally Pipes
Pacific Research Institute

Amy Ridenour
National Center for Public Policy Research

Thomas Schatz
Citizens Against Government Waste

James L. Martin
60 Plus Association

Naomi Lopez Bauman
Illinois Policy Action

Eric Novack
US Health Freedom Coalition

Jenny Beth Martin
Tea Party Patriots

Ginni Thomas
Liberty Consulting

Christopher J. Conover, PhD
Center for Health Policy & Inequalities Research
Duke University

Jeffrey A. Singer, MD
Valley Surgical Clinics, Ltd.

Greg Scandlen
Consumers for Health Care Choices

Kathryn A. Serkes
Doctor Patient Medical Association

Pete Sepp
National Taxpayers Union

Kelly Monroe Kullberg
Christians for a Sustainable Economy
The American Conservancy

Larry Kudlow

David Williams
Taxpayers Protection Alliance

Mario H. Lopez
Hispanic Leadership Fund

Andrew Moylan
R Street Institute

Dick Patten
Family Business Defense Council

Penny Nance
Concerned Women for America

Hal Scherz, M.D.
Doc 4 Patient Care

Alan B. West
National Center for Policy Analysis

Bob Williams
State Budget Solutions

Seton Motley
Less Government

Ron Robinson
Young America’s Foundation

Judson Phillips
Tea Party Nation

Ron Pearson
Council for America

Lew Uhler
National Tax Limitation Committee

Niger Innis
The TeaParty.net

Colin Hanna
Let Freedom Ring

Michael A. Needham
Heritage Action for America

Alex St. James
Blacks for Economic Security Trust

Beverly Gossage
HSA/HRA Specialist

Lawson Bader
Competitive Enterprise Institute

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hidden