Kudlow on Rangel Tax Proposal: He’s Trying

By October 29, 2007Taxation

Larry Kudlow makes the case for working with Chairman Rangel on his tax proposal:

Okay, okay.

House Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel’s “mother of all tax reforms” has some very serious flaws. My supply-side friends have been trashing his plan mercilessly since its unveiling late last week. And as I told Mr. Rangel, when I interviewed him last Thursday night on Kudlow & Company, raising the top tax rates on America’s most successful earners and investors is not a good idea. It’s a surefire way to damage U.S. competitiveness. It also will reduce our potential to grow (not only long-term, but in the short-run, as the economy is softening.)

Still, I come to praise Mr. Rangel, not to bury him.

Charlie Rangel is the first Democrat in Washington — or on the campaign trail for that matter — to propose a pro-growth tax cut, namely a reduction in the corporate tax rate. No Democrat has gone there before. That’s big stuff. It means something. Democratic leaders are backing away from Mr. Rangel due to their unwillingness to propose pro-growth tax cuts and their obsession with punishing the rich. The last pro-growth Democrat to propose lower tax rates was the late President John F. Kennedy. He lowered taxes across the board for all individuals and companies. Might Charlie Rangel be part of the JFK tradition?

Kudlow concludes:

We need to encourage tax reform by maintaining an open, friendly conversation with Mr. Rangel and nurturing additional, specific, tax-reform ideas from GOP leaders. Just as I’ve always preferred optimism to pessimism, and positives to negatives, I also prefer friendly discussion to holier-than-thou trashing.

Seems like a productive approach.

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