Feb 23, 2014

Fair Tax to become a national issue

BY BOB ROBINSON
ASSOC. EDITOR

GREENVILLE – “The good thing about this election year is we’ve made Fair Tax a national issue. We currently have 100 to 120 supporters in the House,” said Steve Curtis, Ohio director of Americans for Fair Taxation. “This year will be about creating the next wave of supporters.”

Curtis told Republicans and guests at the Republican Men’s Club meeting Feb. 15 the organization’s focus was to put Republicans in the House and Senate who support the Fair Tax. “If they don’t support it, we try to find a primary opponent to run against them,” he said. After noting an incumbent typically wins 90 percent of the time, he said “We did this successfully 85 percent of the time.”

Curtis listed three numbers: 218, 60 and 1. “That’s what it will take to change the tax laws… 218 House members, 60 Senators and one president.”

He told the group they hoped to have the needed supporters after the 2016 election, and maybe get someone in the White House who won’t veto it. “We plan to make sure the presidential candidates answer the question,” he said.

The concept of the Fair Tax is simple. You pay your taxes when you make your purchases. No more payroll taxes. No more special interest exemptions. No more complex tax code. Employers no longer have to collect taxes on behalf of the federal government. No more IRS.

“Nobody will stand up and say ‘I understand the tax code,’” Curtis said. “Even IRS agents sometimes say they aren’t sure about something in it… but you will be held responsible if they’re wrong.”

Curtis noted the sales tax dollars will be collected by the state. The state will send the money to Washington rather than Washington controlling the states by sending them dollars and telling them how to use them.

“And there will be no more IRS,” Curtis said. “We can move IRS employees over to Homeland Security. They’ve been terrorizing taxpayers for years… now they can terrorize the terrorists.”

Curtis said the current tax codes make the employee “essentially a slave of the federal government… they decide what you can keep.” With the Fair Tax the consumers decide how much they’re going to pay with their purchases.

The plan is revenue neutral, meaning it would not increase or decrease federal revenues. Curtis estimated the tax would be around 24 percent. To protect the lowest income brackets, no one would pay a sales tax until their purchases exceeded the poverty level.

Curtis covered a variety of issues with the current tax system, including its impact on trade.

“We have 20 percent extra cost built into our products and services,” he said. “This is a problem for exports, making it harder to compete with similar foreign products and services.” The Fair Tax only applies to retail sales of new products and services. It will apply to imports as well as American products.

Curtis estimated taxes and border adjustments alone would cut the unemployment rate by as many as five million jobs.

The Republican Men’s Club meets the third Saturday of each month in the cafeteria at Brethren Retirement Community. Meetings are open to the public.

Steve Curtis, Ohio Director, Americans for Fair Taxation

Nearly two dozen registered Republicans and their guests turned out for the Fair Tax presentation by Steve Curtis Feb. 15. Curtis was the February speaker for the monthly Republican Men’s Club meeting.

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