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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pawlenty's Economic Agenda

At the University of Chicago today, Tim Pawlenty laid out his economic agenda:

  • “Let’s start with a big, positive goal. Let’s grow the economy by five percent, instead of the anemic two percent envisioned currently.
  • “We should cut the business tax rate by more than half. I propose reducing the current rate from 35% to 15%. But our policies can’t just be about simply cutting rates. They must also promote freedom and free markets. The tax code is littered with special interest handouts, carve-outs,subsidies, and loopholes that should be eliminated.”
  • “On the individual rates we need a simpler, fairer flatter tax system overall. I propose just two rates: 10% and 25%. Under my plan, those who currently pay no income tax would stay at a zero rate. After that, the first $50,000 of income – or $100,000 for married couples – would be taxed at 10 percent.
  • “Everything above that would be taxed at 25 percent. That’s it. A one-third cut in the bottom rate to allow younger, middle, and lower-income families to save andbuild wealth. And a 28 percent cut in the top rate to spur investment and job creation.
  • “In addition, we should eliminate altogether the capital gains tax, interest income tax, dividends tax, and the death tax. Government has no moral or economic basis to claim a second share of the same income. When you deposit a dollar in your bank account, every penny should be forever more yours and your children’s, not the federal government’s.”
  • “There are some obvious targets. We can start by applying what I call ‘The Google Test.’ If you can find a good or service on the Internet, then the federal government probably doesn’t need to be doing it. The post office, the government printing office, Amtrak, Fannie and Freddie, were all built for a time in our country when the private sector did not adequately provide those products. That’s no longer the case.”
  • "So I propose that Congress grant the President the temporary and emergency authority to freeze spending at current levels, and impound up to 5% of Federal spending until such time as the budget is balanced. If they won’t do it…I will. As an example, cutting even 1% of overall federal spending for six consecutive years would balance the federal budget by 2017."
  • "One efficiency program, Lean Six Sigma, already has a proven track record. Using performance-based management practices to streamline programs at the CIA and the Pentagon. And as I can personally attest various agencies of the Minnesota state government."
  • “I will require sunsetting of all federal regulations, unless specifically sustained by a vote of Congress.”

The last item would be a particular challenge. According to Clyde Wayne Crews:

  • The 2010 Federal Register stands at an all-time record-high 81,405 pages.
  • Federal Register pages devoted specifically to final rules rose by 20 percent, from 20,782 in 2009 to 24,914.
  • In 2010, agencies issued 3,573 final rules, compared with 3,503 in 2009.