If 2013 is remembered for anything, it may be for all that didn’t happen when it comes to tax policy and fiscal policy, Gleckman writes. Here’s hoping 2014 is more productive.
For the 10 biggest tax expenditures, there's a great variation among the benefits. The rich get an outsized share of the subsidy from some, while low-income households enjoy most of the benefits of others
The Supreme Court ruled that states have broad authority to require Internet sellers to collect sales taxes, just as their Main Street competitors must. And, in a delicious bit of online irony, the justices did it on Cyber Monday.
In an effort to jumpstart international tax reform, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus is suggesting major changes in the way U.S.-based multinational corporations are taxed on their overseas income. Though the plan is advancing tax reform discussions, it leaves many controversial issues unresolved, Gleckman explains.
Last month, Congress and President Obama agreed to reopen the government they had closed and suspend the debt limit until February 7. But, in your nation’s capital, February really means March. Or May. Or possibly June.
As issues with the HealthCare.gov website continue to arise, people need a better way to buy insurance. Health insurance purchases should be part of filing tax returns, Gleckman explains.
The issue of new revenues has already raised its head in negotiations over the budget. Here are some of the gimmicks lawmakers are using to try to raise new tax revenue without actually increasing taxes.
Who benefits from tax subsidies for municipal bonds? It's not as obvious as you think. High-income investors benefit, yes, but depending on what state and local government do with the subsidies, there may also be benefits for low-tax brackets.
Some commentators have proposed that the 'McConnell rule', which would allow the President to raise the debt ceiling unilaterally, become law. Gleckman argues these proposals illogical and instead argues that Congress ought to be mandated to finance all spending decisions that they approve.
When it comes to deficit reduction, cuts to familiar social programs such as Medicare, Social Security and college loans are often regarded as "untouchable." Gleckman reminds us that there is an additional $1 trillion-plus in tax subsidies that are also often seen as entitlements and are thus dismissed from discussions surrounding spending cuts. Gleckman argues these tax subsidies inefficient and claims that a restructuring of these subsidies could greatly reduce our deficit.
Many argue that the short-term deal to reopen the government and reauthorize Treasury borrowing buys time but does nothing to change Washington’s toxic culture. But Congress and President Obama could reach a mini-bargain that would at least take the edge off the current ugliness, Gleckman writes.
If the agreement reached yesterday sticks, Congress has just shuttered much of the federal government for more than two weeks and risked a market-shattering federal default in order to convene a meeting of budget negotiators.
House Republicans have tentatively agreed on a plan to extend the debt limit for about six weeks while keeping the government partially shuttered. But the deal would only briefly put off what has become an ugly and dangerous confrontation over the nation’s ability to pay its bills, Gleckman writes.
The dollar is the world's reserve currency because the U.S. has the world's biggest economy, yes, but also because investors need not worry about political risk. But with the deadline to raise the debt-limit fast approaching and no compromise in sight, is the U.S. losing its reputation as a safe investment?
The debt limit 'debate' is not about limiting the size of government, entitlement reforms, or tax reform. Instead, Republicans in Congress are yet again debating whether Congress should authorize the government to pay for spending—wait for it—that Congress has already authorized the government to undertake.
Government shutdowns could well become a standard part of the annual budget process, Gleckman writes. If government shutdowns become routine, attention-seeking lawmakers will only escalate their threats.
As a potential government shutdown approaches, House Republicans consider adding a framework for tax reform to legislation needed to increase the federal government’s borrowing authority. Gleckman explores what a GOP tax reform proposal could like, arguing it counterproductive.
New estimates released by the Tax Policy Center show the number of Social Security and Medicare taxpayers is growing. Even among those households that will not pay federal income tax this year, the majority will still owe Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes.
With a hike in the estate tax exemption, estate tax lawyers are running out of work, Gleckman writes.
Here's an interesting but little known problem with the federal income tax system: People who have tax withheld from their paychecks but, for some reason, don’t file returns. For many, ignoring their 1040 means they are paying tax they don’t owe.