Sunday, September 24, 2006

GAO Executive Walker: We Must Do Better on Business Taxation

Comptroller General David Walker spoke this week before the Senate Finance Committee on the need for reform in business taxation. Walker placed his commentary in the context of general tax reform and said that the present business tax structure distorted investment decisions, encouraged tax shelters and tax evasion efforts and increased record-keeping costs. Walker proposed a broadening of the business income tax base, a reduction in complexity and preferences and some degree of neutrality between business sectors.

I approve of Walker's theory--to implement this theory, however, Congress must overcome several hurdles: inertia, a lack of strong public demand for reform and its own record for catering to special constituencies. Twenty years ago, all this came together; though I wish otherwise, I don't think that America is ready for another round of intense tax reform.


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