Visiting with the Ramona Chamber of Commerce at their recent mixer, hosted by Ramona Disposal, reinforced to me the importance of the tax reform plan we are working on in Congress. House Republicans rolled out our framework for fixing the broken tax code that has been plaguing individual freedom and business growth for decades. I am excited about this plan. It is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to work towards a better future for every American. A straightforward approach that will deliver more jobs, implement fairer taxes and result in bigger paychecks.
Americans deserve a fairer and simpler tax code. We deserve to live our lives without thinking that our tax system is purposely rigged against us. The last time our tax code was reformed was 1986. To put that in perspective, the last time we had a tax overhaul, people were lining up to watch Top Gun at the movies and tuning in to see Cheers on Thursday night television.
A lot has changed in 31 years. The visionary, competitive tax code President Reagan signed into law has become cumbersome, complex, and outdated. Loopholes and complexity have made it difficult for American families and small business to get by, let alone get ahead. Today, the tax code punishes success, and that’s not the American way.
I believe hardworking men and women across this country deserve to keep more of what they earn. That’s what our plan offers: bigger paychecks. An opportunity for families to decide for themselves how best to meet their own needs, not rely on the government to make those choices for them.
Opponents of meaningful tax reform always go to the same war cry; that this is a tax cut for the rich. Wrong. This plan lowers tax rates for individuals and families. If you paid 10 percent, now you would pay 0 percent. If you paid 15 percent, now you would pay 12 percent. A typical middle-income family of four earning $59,000 (the median household income) will receive a $1,182 tax cut. Our plan increases the standard deduction, establishes a new family tax credit, preserves the dependent care credit, eliminates the death tax and retains popular retirement savings options.
The bill implements a simpler process that allows individuals to file their taxes on the back of a postcard. At the same time, we want to promote American generosity and home ownership, so our tax plan maintains the deductions for charitable giving, mortgage interest and allowing people to write off state and local property taxes.
From a business perspective, the single most important step we can do to create growth is provide certainty and confidence in the economy. For too long, “Made in America” has been an unrealistic goal for many businesses. Our country has one of the worst tax codes in the industrialized world for businesses small and large, driving many companies to close up shop or go overseas.
We want jobs to come to America and to STAY in America. By lowering the corporate tax rate to 20%, we create a foundation for more American competitiveness. Opportunities are created for businesses to invest in hiring more workers, opening more locations, providing a better product to their customers. Whether it’s a large corporation or my friend Bob Murray at the Java Hut in Ramona, reducing the tax rate on the hard-earned business income is going to help the job creators of America’s Main streets who will be allowed to write off the full cost of new equipment and interest on their loans.
Our vision for tax reform is easy to understand. We are going for growth, simplicity and fairness that will dramatically improve the quality of life for individuals and families and make America a magnet for job creation. We want bold reforms that will increase paychecks, grow local businesses and expand our economy. We want a tax code that is fair, and encourages American businesses to hire more workers and invest here at home.
Pro-growth tax reform is a priority. After years of hearings and meetings and listening to people across this country, we look forward to getting this done before the end of this year. Simply stated, we want a tax code that works for you — not the other way around and I look forward to seeing it happen.
Duncan Hunter represents California’s 50th Congressional District, which includes the community of Ramona. This article was originally published in the Ramona Sentinel, Nov 8, 2017.