As part of President Biden’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2023, the White House has once again endorsed a major tax increase on accumulated wealth, adding up to a 61 percent tax on wealth of high-earning taxpayers.4 min read
Scott Hodge is President Emeritus & Senior Policy Advisor at the Tax Foundation, which he led as President for over two decades, between 2000 and 2022. Scott Hodge is recognized as one of Washington’s leading experts on tax policy, the federal budget, and government spending. After taking over the Tax Foundation, he grew the organization from a modest, six-person group with a storied brand into a national powerhouse with a staff of over 30, informing smarter tax policy at the federal, state, and global levels.
Scott led the development of the Tax Foundation’s most successful programs, the Taxes and Growth Dynamic Tax Modeling project and the State Business Tax Climate Index, two projects that have changed the terms of the tax debate, encouraged competition towards pro-growth tax policies, and demonstrated to policymakers and taxpayers alike the impact of the tax code on our daily lives. Combined with his experience in tax policy of more than 35 years, Scott was one of the driving forces of tax reform that culminated in the historic 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Congress and the White House turned to Scott and the Tax Foundation for guidance in crafting the once-in-a-generation legislation.
The TCJA was just the latest in a string of developments in tax policy that Scott helped foster. During the 1990s, he helped design the major tax components of the Contract with America that became the eventual centerpieces of the 1997 tax bill and the Bush tax cuts in 2001 and 2003.
Scott has written and edited three books on the federal budget and streamlining the government and has authored hundreds of studies on tax policy and government spending. He has also written dozens of editorials and opinion pieces for publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, USA TODAY, the New York Post and The Washington Times. And he has conducted more than 1,000 radio and television interviews—including with NBC Nightly News, CBS Evening News, CNN, Fox, Hardball with Chris Matthews, and C-SPAN.
Before joining the Tax Foundation, Scott was Director of Tax and Budget Policy at Citizens for a Sound Economy. He also spent ten years at The Heritage Foundation as a fellow analyzing budget and tax policy. He holds a degree in political science from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Congressional Democrats are reported to be weighing a special tax on the assets of billionaires to raise revenues to pay for their Build Back Better spending plan. There are two fundamental challenges to such a plan.7 min read
One has to wonder how stable or sustainable the Democrats’ spending program can be if it must rely so heavily on the taxes paid by such a small number of taxpayers as in the top 1 percent.4 min read
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Plan Avoids Tax Increases, Undermines User-Pay Principle, and Misses Chance to Modernize Obsolete Programs
The good news is that lawmakers avoided raising taxes to cover the cost of the new spending and instead used some reasonable fees and asset sales. The bad news is that half of the offsets come from unused, debt-financed COVID-19 relief funds and the economic return on many of these investments is questionable.7 min read
Economic research and Tax Foundation modeling indicate there is a negative trade-off between progressive taxes on capital income—such as the wealth tax, minimum book tax on corporate income, and a higher corporate tax rate—and economic growth.21 min read
The economics is clear: If Biden wants to maximize the economic benefits of his $3 trillion in new infrastructure spending, he should cut $3 trillion in other government spending to pay for it.7 min read
We ought to be worried about the impact of corporate taxes on women, low-skilled workers, and younger workers, since they are the very workers who have been most impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Raising the corporate tax rate would simply hurt them even more.22 min read
Joe Biden has proposed an ambitious agenda that would make the federal fiscal system more progressive, and the huge budget deficits caused by the numerous COVID-19 relief packages could heighten the call for more tax revenues. What is needed are benchmark facts to guide these debates.13 min read
In her recent confirmation hearing, economist Janet Yellen, President Biden’s choice for Treasury Secretary, sought to reassure markets that the new administration would not raise corporate taxes until the economy improves. At the same time, however, she sent a troubling signal that when they do push for higher corporate tax rates, they would do so in coordination with other countries so that the U.S. doesn’t lose its competitive edge.5 min read
Today’s advocates would do well to study the history of excess profits taxes before overselling these taxes as a solution to the COVID-19 crisis.6 min read
We recently hosted an exclusive webinar discussion to get up to speed on recent digital tax developments and gain insight from leading international tax experts on the OECD’s BEPS project.9 min read
Improving the Tax Treatment of Residential Buildings Will Stretch Affordable Housing Assistance Dollars Further
By updating the tax code to allow developers to more fully cover their investments, construction costs will fall, which, in turn, means that federal affordable housing assistance dollars will go that much further in helping low-income tenants.3 min read
Based on the CBO’s assessment of the economic and budgetary effects of federal investment, lawmakers should look to spur private sector investment rather than try to enact a massive federal infrastructure bill.5 min read
What changed in the global economy that disrupted traditional means of taxation? Is it worth finding a way to include tax digital goods and services in the tax base? Why are digital services taxes so problematic? Are there better options—ways to adapt our current system without introducing complex and economically harmful policies?2 min read
What are the best tax policies to encourage a smooth transition and strong economic recovery? How should goals of economic recovery and growth be balanced with revenue needs?1 min read
Alesina’s work suggests that raising taxes to reduce the federal deficit and national debt would be an economic mistake. The less economically damaging path is to cut spending, what some have called austerity policies.3 min read
The Tax Foundation’s General Equilibrium Model suggests that allowing businesses to immediately deduct or “expense” their capital investments in the year in which they are purchased delivers the biggest bang for the buck in spurring economic growth and jobs compared to other tax policies.7 min read
What challenges should we expect to face as the U.S. economy begins to re-open? When is the right time for legislators to start focusing on long-term recovery vs. short-term needs? What policies should federal legislators pursue to clear a path to recovery?1 min read
Governments at all levels must work to remove the tax policy barriers that stand in the way of economic recovery and long-term prosperity following the COVID-19 crisis. Our new guide outlines several comprehensive options that policymakers can take at the federal and state levels.26 min read