Turning Slogans into Tax Policy
27 Pages Posted: 1 Apr 2008
The article examines the Bush Administration's tax cutting agenda, focusing on recent attempts to repeal the estate tax and to eliminate the shareholder-level income tax on corporate dividends. In each of these two seemingly disparate episodes, the Administration used dubious economic claims and populist rhetoric to promote tax cuts without considering revenue costs or distributional effects. The legislative outcomes, however, were driven largely by budget constraints and interest group politics. In conclusion, the article suggests that the Administration's tax cutting agenda is best understood in terms of politics and ideology rather than conventional tax policy.
Keywords: estate tax, corporate tax, dividends, budget, distributional effects, Bush tax cuts
JEL Classification: K34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation