Campaign Issues: Tax Reform

For GA-06 in particular, but for MT-AL as well, the campaigns may need something new to discuss. The issue of infrastructure spending has been discussed a lot. Have the candidates discussed tax reform, one of the other major Republican issues on the table in Washington? Have the campaigns discussed charter schools, as enabled by the federal government (a Trump/DeVos idea)?

There are a couple of aspects of the tax reform issue which our candidates can discuss and enliven the campaign:

First, is to state whether they support Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on the idea that Trump must reveal his own tax returns before the Democrats will work with the Republicans on their legislation. This isn’t a major thing, and they can say whatever they like and their voters would like.

Second, they should specify whether they favor major reform of the kind House Speaker Paul Ryan has been proposing. That is, for individuals, an elimination of most or all deductions and a flat tax rate and something similar for corporations. However, the most important thing is the reduction of tax rates for S corporations which are usually mom & pop small businesses which are often the biggest new employers in the economy. This may require our candidates to do a little reading on the issue to inform themselves. One ‘trick’ with that rate reduction is that some very ‘big’ businesses like hedge funds operate the same way and their incomes are sometimes hundreds of millions of dollars.

Next would be, to clarify their position if it is for some other kind of tax reform or to maintain the type of tax system we have today and if they prefer any other refinements such as expanding the EITC credit or raising rates or anything else.

Be prepared to defend your position by practicing some debate with campaign workers or friends.

The issue of charter schools is perhaps harder because the Democrats have traditionally been willing, in various states, to accept them to different degrees and with differing standards. On this the candidates can stake out new territory they would hope to take to Congress. There is no ONE Democratic Party position.

However, study the issue some, so you aren’t ambushed by something weird the Rs might throw at you. Read what you opponent has said on the subject and be ready to rebut their position as well as you can. Practice with campaign opponents or friends.

These aren’t the easiest issues to discuss in a campaign, but they are hot topics in Washington and may come up.

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