Kudos to Sandy Levin For Speaking Out For Fiscal Responsibility

Rep. Sandy Levin (D-MI), the senior Democrat  on the House Ways & Means Committee, stood up on the House floor yesterday and urged Congress to refuse to make permanent three special tax breaks for charitable giving unless their $11 billion cost was paid for. Why were his remarks notable? Because Levin was the prime sponsor […]


No Congressional Approval of a Spending Deal Yet, But Plenty of Commotion

In the spending bill, inversion curbs could be curbed. The bill to fund the government through September 2015, scheduled for a House vote today and a Senate vote after that, waters down Democratic-supported curbs on corporate inversions. The Ds would have barred companies that move their tax addresses outside the country from getting US government […]


A Repatriation Tax Holiday for US Multinationals? Four Contagious Illusions

U.S.-based multinationals hold $2.1 trillion in foreign cash and insist that the only way they can feasibly bring that money back home is if Congress grants them a tax holiday—an idea that even President Obama now appears to support. But the argument they (and the President) are making for a holiday is based on a […]


Last Minute, or Second- or Third-to-Last Minute, Deals Before the Holidays

Congress blows yet another budget deadline. After missing its chance to approve a spending bill to keep the government running after Thursday, Congress is now planning to vote this week on a very short-term continuing resolution—one good for just a few days. The measure  is designed to keep the government open and buy some time […]


Why Does Congress Pay For Some Tax Cuts and Not Others?

Can somebody explain to me why the House agreed last week to restore 50+ tax subsidies without paying for them (and thus adding $42 billion to the deficit) and 10 minutes later approved a new tax subsidy that it insisted on paying for? It can’t be the merits of the recipients. By now, TaxVox readers […]


Don’t Count the Feds Out Yet

In a provocative Washington Post column, Brookings Institution scholar Bruce Katz argues that the federal government is becoming irrelevant — especially to cities and regions where most Americans live and most economic activity takes place. While Bruce rightly identifies some areas where the feds are fading, he overstates the phenomenon. The federal government remains the […]


Hits or Misses in Budgets and Courts?

News from the Hill: A compromise $1.1 trillion spending bill is expected to be released today. The House is scheduled to vote on the bill tomorrow and then adjourn for the year. The Senate will likely vote on Thursday, just hours before the December 11 deadline. The package will  fund most of the government through next […]


The Lee-Rubio Family-Friendly Tax Is a Disappointment

Tax reform is in the air and in an effort to make it more family-friendly, Senator Lee has introduced a bill, the Family Fairness and Opportunity Tax Reform Act. Senator Rubio is a supporter as well. The bill broadens the tax base by eliminating many itemized deductions; but instead of using the revenue savings to […]


Congress Ties Up Loose Ends, Loosely

The Senate may soon send that retroactive tax-break bill to the President. The House passed it last week, and the Senate is expected to take up the measure this week. The House version  would  revive 50+ expired tax breaks only through the end of 2014. Tax Analysts reports that Dave Reichert, the incoming chair of […]


Congress May Just “Let It Go” … Until Next Year

Congress might really be home for the holidays. Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden told reporters today that the Senate won’t amend the House-approved bill to revive over 50 expired tax breaks for 2014 only. An up-or-down Senate vote could be held within days. Lawmakers must still sort out what they’ll do about a spending bill—funding […]