Former Reagan Policy Adviser: Everything Republicans Say About Taxes Is A Lie

In a USA Today op-ed, Former Reagan-Bush policy adviser Bruce Bartlett wrote, "everything Republicans say about taxes today is a lie." (Photo Credit: Public Domain)

In a USA Today op-ed, Former Reagan-Bush policy adviser Bruce Bartlett wrote, "everything Republicans say about taxes today is a lie."

The Tax Reform Act of 1986 reduced the top personal income tax rate to just 28% from 50%, and the corporate tax rate to 34% from 46%. Yet there was no increase in the rate of economic growth in subsequent years and by 1990 the economy was in a deep recession. Strenuous efforts by economists to find a growth effect from the 1986 act have failed to find any.

Virtually everything Republicans say about taxes today is a lie.

Virtually everything Republicans say about taxes today is a lie. Tax cuts and tax rate reductions will not pay for themselves; they never have. Republicans don’t even believe they will, they are just excuses to slash spending for the poor when revenues collapse and deficits rise. There is no evidence that tax reform raises growth, although it may improve fairness and tax administration.

An increase in taxes doesn't necessarily mean that the economy will suffer.

And the Republican idea that tax increases always crash the economy is belied by the experiences after Bill Clinton raised taxes in 1993 and Barack Obama did the same in 2013.

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