Category: Tax Law and Planning
A look at positions of some of the 2008 presidential candidates on taxes. Note that there is no real secret to tax laws - its like dieting where you eat less and exercise more to lose weight. Either spend less and to tax less, or tax more to spend more. Some of the proposals courtesy of the Associated Press
_New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton: Tax proposals are so far focused on universal health care plan, including tax credits to make insurance more affordable. Also, tax a portion of health insurance benefits provided to workers making more than $250,000 and repeal some of President Bush's tax cuts for them.
_Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards: For middle and low-income people, set up tax-free savings accounts and have government match the first $500 in savings, expand earned-income and child and dependent care tax credits, and exempt the first $250 of investment income from capital gains taxes. Raise rate on capital gains tax to 28 percent from 15 percent for those making over $250,000. Repeal the Bush tax cuts for families making over $200,000. Tax cuts to be paid for by the tax increases on wealthier Americans.
_Illinois Sen. Barack Obama: About $80 billion in tax breaks mainly for low-income workers and the elderly, including tax credit worth up to $500 a person to offset payroll taxes and elimination of tax-filing requirement for older workers making under $50,000. A mortgage-interest credit could be used by lower-income homeowners who do not take the mortgage interest deduction because they do not itemize their taxes. Raise corporate taxes and the top rate on capital gains and dividends to pay for the cuts.
_Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani: Make permanent the Bush tax cuts that expire in 2010 and eliminate the inheritance tax. Also, hold the line on marginal tax rates or reduce them, and establish a permanent child tax credit. Index the alternative minimum tax to inflation. Income tax deduction of $7,500 per taxpayer to defray health insurance costs. Cost breakdowns not spelled out.
_Arizona Sen. John McCain: Opposed some of Bush's tax cuts because they were not wedded to spending cuts, now says the tax cuts should be made permanent. Eliminate alternative minimum tax.
_Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney: Tax breaks to those earning less than $200,000, including eliminating capital gains, interest and dividend taxes for most. Estimated cost of $32 billion a year to be paid in part by keeping growth of non-defense spending under inflation rate. Details not spelled out. Also, make permanent the Bush tax cuts that expire in 2010 and eliminate estate tax.