The Tax Policy Blog

October 24, 2007

Attorneys at Mintz Levin have written an article summarizing the arguments made by the Davis side in the upcoming Supreme Court case Kentucky Dep't of Revenue v. Davis, in which the Tax Foundation submitted an amicus curiae ("friend of the court") brief in support of Mr. and Mrs. Davis. The Mintz Levin article is excellent and mostly neutral, though...

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October 23, 2007

The Florida House yesterday passed by an almost unanimous margin a bill that would put a property tax cut on the ballot in January. The Senate has a scaled down version. Details from the Sun-Sentinel:

Facing deadline pressure, the Florida House passed a reworked property tax-cut plan with overwhelming bipartisan support on Monday, setting up a showdown...

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October 22, 2007

Today, an Associated Press article released from the campaign trail in New Hampshire detailed Obama's speech on tax policy to a local restaurant (where no sales tax is charged, by the way).

At a Nashua restaurant, [Obama] renewed his pledge to make the nation's tax system more fair.

"We've got a tax code that's making things worse. This isn't an accident," he...

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October 20, 2007

In what he calls a defense of the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), Michael Kinsley in the Washington Post never gets around to telling us what lawmakers should do about it. Instead he contents himself with criticizing Senator Grassley for advocating repeal and President Bush for not having repealed it.

He makes one good observation though: "Tax deductions aren't (...

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October 19, 2007

The blog post just before this one was our 1,000th blog post since we launched the Tax Policy Blog about two and a half years ago. Thanks to all who read it and help make it a success!

One classic blog post of ours from two years ago today discusses the simultaneous birth and death of the ignored recommendations of the President's Tax Reform Panel:

The panel intends to call for the capping of tax deductions on...

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October 18, 2007

President Bush's decision to veto the smoker-funded SCHIP expansion has elicited some silly new counter-arguments from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), specifically over who's going to pay for it: smokers who are disproportionately poor.

In the past, the tax-raisers at CBPP ("the Center") have balked somewhat at tobacco taxes, knowing they hit the poor hardest.

But in the current, feverish campaign, that sympathy for the poor has been twisted. CBPP has...

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October 17, 2007

Today's Boston Herald features an op-ed by Tax Foundation economist Curtis Dubay. In his piece, Curtis tackles the Bay State's long-enduring "Taxachussetts" label. He points to Massachusetts' low ranking in the 2008 State Business Tax Climate Index as one reason the label has lived on.

In his column, Curtis points out the facts:

...
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October 17, 2007

Today, the Dalai Lama was awarded a congressional gold medal from the United States. But before the House of Representatives approved the $30,000 funding for the award on September 13th, Representative Ron Paul (R-TX), known as Dr. No for his typical opposition to government spending programs that he does not see authorized by the Constitution, had this to say as the lone voice opposing the measure. Enjoy.

Mr. PAUL: Mr. Speaker, with great sadness I must rise to oppose...

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October 17, 2007

What to do about the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)? That is the $64,000 question in Washington tax policy circles. The Washington Post has two new stories on the issue. The first is an A.P. story detailing Charlie Rangel's offering of a one-year patch due to the fact that time is running out to do something before filing season begins in January.

Pressure is building for...

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October 17, 2007

The Tax Foundation has released a new comprehensive study that looks at the gasoline tax at both the federal and state level, both today and in a historical context. Here's an excerpt from the executive summary:

Over the past century, Americans have witnessed a marked increase in mobility through safe and reliable roadways. This improved mobility has undoubtedly increased the overall quality of life in the United States. Gasoline...

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October 16, 2007

13,000 Americans will be randomly selected for an IRS audit for research purposes, according to U.S. News & World Report:

The Internal Revenue Service relaunched its program of random audits this month in an effort to hone its ability to estimate compliance rates and crack down on...

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October 16, 2007

If Maryland lawmakers approve tax increases during the special session that begins October 29, then Maryland's taxpayers might lay some of the blame at the feet of the state's courts.  In fact, it is unlikely that Maryland would need to raise taxes in special session if it weren't for court ruling a decage ago.

Back in 1996, a state court ruled (in the case of...

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October 15, 2007

How much federal spending comes back to each state, compared to the federal taxes paid by residents of each state? That's the question answered each year by the Tax Foundation and the Census Bureau. Census provides the spending breakdown, and the Tax Foundation tallies the taxes and calculates the ratios.

Census published the spending data for federal fiscal year 2005 earlier this week in its Consolidated Federal Funds Report (CFFR).

See the Tax Foundation's news...

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October 15, 2007

In a recent Associated Press (AP) article comparing federal taxes to federal spending by state, author Stephen Ohlemacher reports District of Columbia residents paid $31,250 per capita in federal taxes.

See an earlier blog post debunking Ohlemacher's amateurish methods.

Ohlemacher calculated this greatly inflated amount for District of Columbia residents because...

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October 12, 2007

In what may be one of the strangest sets of tax proposals put forth to fill a budget gap ever in public finance, Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has decided that he wants to raise property taxes in the city, as well as raise taxes and fees on selected products, including bottled water.

From the Chicago Tribune:

Mayor Richard Daley reached for bottled water to slake his...

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Subscribe to Tax Foundation - Tax Foundation's Tax Policy Blog The Tax Policy Blog is the official weblog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.

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