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There’s A Tax For That

- May 9, 2011

Whatever The Policy Question, Obama’s Answer Is ‘More Taxes’

 HOW TO LOWER GAS PRICES: MORE TAXES

In A Quest For More Revenue, The Obama Administration Has Proposed A Car Tax On Miles Traveled. “The Obama administration has floated a transportation authorization bill that would require the study and implementation of a plan to tax automobile drivers based on how many miles they drive.” (Pete Kasperowicz, “Obama Floats Plan To Tax Cars By The Mile,” The Hill’s “Floor Action Blog” Blog, 5/5/11)

The Plan Would Install Electronic Trackers On Vehicles And Charge Drivers At Filling Stations. “Among other things, CBO suggested that a vehicle miles traveled (VMT) tax could be tracked by installing electronic equipment on each car to determine how many miles were driven; payment could take place electronically at filling stations.” (Pete Kasperowicz, “Obama Floats Plan To Tax Cars By The Mile,” The Hill’s “Floor Action Blog” Blog, 5/5/11)

The VMT Would Be More Complicated And More Expensive To Implement Than The Current Fuel Taxes. “However, collecting VMT taxes in this way would be more complicated and more expensive than the current system of collecting fuel taxes.” (Congressional Budget Office, “Alternative Approaches To Funding Highways,” March 2011)

The VMT Would Require Every American To Attach A Meter To Their Car. “The problem is in the implementation: it’s hard to have a compulsory VMT tax, since that involves attaching some kind of meter to every American’s car, and Americans are not going respond well to that idea. Hell, even New York cabbies went on strike to protest GPS devices being put in their vehicles to track their every movement.” (Felix Salmon, “The Problems With A Nationwide VMT Tax,” Reuters’ Blog2/11/10)

  • “There Really Is Something Quite Creepily Big Brotherish About Trying To Track Every Single Vehicle In America.” (Felix Salmon, “The Problems With A Nationwide VMT Tax,” Reuters’ Blog2/11/10)

People With Used Cars, Or Cars Bought Before The System Is Put Into Place, Would Be Paying High Costs For The Necessary Meters. “For users, capital costs would be high if older vehicles had to be retrofitted with the equipment used to meter travel and communicate data, and the potential for technical problems and tampering could be high as well.” (Congressional Budget Office, “Alternative Approaches To Funding Highways,” March 2011)

HOW TO LOWER THE DEFICIT: MORE TAXES

Obama Wants To Raise Taxes By $2 Trillion. “In his speech on Wednesday, Mr. Obama proposed closing tax deductions and other tax breaks for higher earners, defined as families making more than $250,000. That would help raise about $1 trillion over 12 years, aides said at the time. The White House isn’t hiding the other $1 trillion from allowing rates to expire for higher earners. It just tends to get lost in the blizzard of figures. White House officials confirmed the revenue numbers, while defending their policy. ‘The President’s goal is to raise $1 trillion in revenues in addition to allowing the upper-income tax cuts expire,’ one aide said. ‘And extending the upper-income tax cuts would add $1 trillion to the deficit.’” (John D. McKinnon, “Battle Of The Baselines,” The Wall Street Journal’s “Washington Wire” Blog, 4/15/11)

Over Half Of The Savings From Obama’s New Deficit “Plan” Come From Tax Increases, Not One-Third As The President Claimed. “So of the 3.4 percentage points of savings, more than half — 1.9 points — comes from taxes. That’s 56 percent, not the one-third or one-quarter that Obama was talking about. And I am assuming that Goldman is using the White House’s rosier economic forecasts when evaluating Obama’s plan.” (James Pethokoukis, “Obama’s New Plan May Actually Rely 60 Percent On Tax Increases,” Reuters, 4/15/11)

The President’s FY2012 Budget Proposes A Series Of Tax Increases That Were Already Rejected By The Democrat-Controlled Congress. “President Barack Obama's budget proposal resurrects a series of tax increases on certain corporations and the wealthy that were largely ignored by Congress when Democrats controlled both chambers.” (Stephen Ohlemacher, “Obama Budget Resurrects Rejected Tax Increases,” The Associated Press, 2/14/11)

  • CBS News’ Mark Knoller: “Even if every provision of President Obama's deficit reduction plan is enacted - and he concedes it won't be - there still won't be a balanced budget on the horizon. And the National Debt will continue to expand by trillions of dollars.” (Mark Knoller, “Obama Deficit Reduction Plan Leaves Deficits,” CBS News, 4/13/11)

HOW TO CREATE JOBS: MORE TAXES

“President Barack Obama Told The Nation’s Business Leaders He Wanted To Be Friends. But After Releasing His Budget On Monday, They’re Not Feeling The Love.”  (Chris Frates, “Business Cool To Obama’s Budget,” Politico2/15/11)

  • “The Budget Also Proposes Roughly $300 Billion In New Taxes On Energy Companies, Multinationals And Banks. So Much For The New Detente Between The White House And Business.”  (Editorial, “The Cee Lo Green Budget,” The Wall Street Journal2/15/11)

Obama’s Budget Raises Taxes By $1.6 Trillion, With Businesses Taking A Significant Hit. “However, Obama also would rely heavily on new taxes, to a degree unacknowledged by administration officials in recent days. His budget request calls for well over $1.6 trillion in fresh revenue over the next decade, much of it through higher taxes on the wealthy and businesses.”  (Lori Montgomery, “Obama Budget Projects Record $1.6 Trillion Deficit,” The Washington Post, 2/14/11)

Obama’s Budget Contains Taxes On Businesses That He Has Pushed For The Last Two Years And “Have Troubled Many In The Business Community.”  “Proposed tax increases for businesses and high earners that play a big role in the president's budget outline have a slender chance of passing Congress this year. … President Barack Obama's budget largely restates proposals he has pushed since taking office that have troubled many in the business community. The plan comes after several months of administration efforts to mend relations with business and the president's call last month for a corporate-tax overhaul.” (John D. McKinnon, “Big Role For Tax Increases Fuels Criticism From Business Groups,” The Wall Street Journal, 2/15/11)

Obama’s Budget Contains Many Tax Increases “That Were Largely Ignored By Congress When Democrats Controlled Both Chambers.”  “President Barack Obama's budget proposal resurrects a series of tax increases that were largely ignored by Congress when Democrats controlled both chambers. Republicans, who now control the House, are signaling they will be even less receptive.” (“Obama Budget Resurrects Rejected Tax Increases,” The Associated Press2/14/11)

Obama’s Plan To Tax Multinational Corporations Is “Of Particular Concern” To Some Business Groups Who Believe It Will Hurt U.S. Competitiveness.  “Of particular concern to some business groups was the proposal to raise taxes on multinational corporations by $129 billion over the next decade. The president had included the idea in his 2011 budget, but most of it was never enacted. A big-business coalition comprising a number of associations, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, suggested the latest proposals would set back the cause of improving U.S. competitiveness.” (John D. McKinnon, “Big Role For Tax Increases Fuels Criticism From Business Groups,” The Wall Street Journal, 2/15/11)

Obama’s Budget Also Includes A New Tax On Businesses That Would Double The Amount Of Income That Is Subject To Unemployment Insurance Taxes.  “The budget also includes a measure that would more than double the amount of income on which employers must pay unemployment insurance fees to $15,000. The administration argues the increase would bring the taxable wage base to the same level in real terms as it was under the Reagan administration, but Republicans have said it amounts to a massive tax increase on businesses.”  (Steven Sloan, “Obama Revises Effort To Raise Taxes On Wealthiest Americans,”Congressional Quarterly, 2/14/11)

HOW TO “FIX” HEALTH CARE: MORE TAXES

Obama Pays For His Government Takeover Of Health Care With Nearly $570 Billion In Job-Destroying Taxes On Small Businesses, Investments And Innovation. (Douglas W. Elmendorf, Letter To Nancy Pelosi, Congressional Budget Office, 3/20/10; “Estimated Revenue Effects Of The Amendment In The Nature Of A Substitute To H.R. 4872: JCX-17-10,” Joint Committee On Taxation, 3/20/10)

“About One-Third Of Employers Subject To Major Requirements Of The New Health Care Law May Face Tax Penalties Because They Offer Health Insurance That Could Be Considered Unaffordable To Some Employees, A New Study Says.” (Robert Pear, “Study Points to Health Law’s Penalties,” The New York Times, 5/23/10)

  • “If An Employer With 50 Full-Time Employees Offers Coverage And 10 Of Those Workers Receive Premium Credits, Or Subsidies, The Employer Would Face A Penalty Of $30,000. If 30 Workers Receive Subsidies, The Penalty Would Be $40,000.” (Robert Pear, “Study Points to Health Law’s Penalties,” The New York Times, 5/23/10)

ObamaCare Raises Taxes $32 Billion Through To A Tax on High Cost Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage. ("Estimated Revenue Effects Of The Manager's Amendment To The Revenue Provisions Contained In The 'Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act," Joint Committee On Taxation Report, 12/20/10)

  • And $5 Billion Over 10 Years From New Taxes On Americans Who Save For Their Health Costs. “Conform the definition of medical expenses for health savings accounts, Archer MSAs, health flexible spending arrangements, and health reimbursement arrangements to the definition of the itemized deduction for medical expenses (excluding over-the-counter medicines prescribed by a physician)” ("Estimated Revenue Effects Of The Manager's Amendment To The Revenue Provisions Contained In The 'Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act," Joint Committee On Taxation Report, 12/20/10)

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