Tax Reform Will Wait – Which May Be a Good Thing

The Bush administration is backing away from a plan to make a big push for tax reform in 2006, instead opting to wait until after the elections. In the process, they seem to be subtly backing away from the proposals of the blue ribbon commission which failed, as blue ribbon commissions so often do, in its mandate to fundamentally reform the tax code in a way that makes it simpler and fairer. Of course, the idea of having a commission when there is a very good plan (the Flat Tax as pushed by Dick Armey, Steve Forbes and others) and an excellent plan (the Fair Tax, H.R. 25 as pushed by Zell Miller, Stephen Moore, Neal Boortz, John Linder and others) seemed kind of pointless in the first place. The recommendations of the President’s panel are nonstarters, having already run into opposition from one of the most powerful lobbies in the country nominally representing a constituency of nearly 70% of adults on the issue of mortgage deductibility. It looks like we have a year’s reprieve to regroup and rethink. It’s an election year, so it’s also an opportunity to remind those GOP Senators and Representatives why we sent them to D.C. in the first place.

“The timing is unclear,” White House economic adviser Al Hubbard told reporters on Friday. “In terms of priorities for next year, that’s up — I’m going to leave it up to him to share his priorities with the American people.”

While commending the tax panel’s work as “excellent,” Hubbard added, “That’s not to say we’re signing off on what their proposals are.”

Added Another blog raises an interesting point –

I wonder how much money was spent on this Panel and its dead-on-arrival report.

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