FairTax advocates brief congressional staffers
Presidents of National Taxpayers Union and National Small Business Association brief congressional staffers
A team of FairTax economists and advocates recently spoke to a number of congressional staffers about the FairTax Plan. Present at the briefing were representatives of more than a dozen congressional offices, including the tax-writing committees.
Representatives from Americans For Fair Taxation (AFFT) led off, followed by the presidents of two organizations John Berthoud of the National Taxpayers Union (NTU) and Todd McCracken of the National Small Business Association (NSBA).
AFFT representatives discussed their current efforts, including recent success before the South Carolina primary in attracting more than 8,000 FairTax supporters to rally. They also discussed the nonpartisan nature of AFFT, the history of the organization, the concentration of AFFT on research, and the importance of ensuring that Congress actually defines the criteria for reform.
Todd McCracken began his discussion by introducing NSBA as the oldest small business group in the nation. For almost 70 years (longer than any other small business organization) NSBA has remained America's small-business advocate with the primary mission of backing state and federal policies that are beneficial to small business, the state, and the nation and promoting the growth of free enterprise.
McCracken advised the group that the NSBA has long supported the FairTax, and stated, “That is an indication of how much the concept and legislation appeals to a broad cross section of business groups, from retailers to realtors.” McCracken also mentioned the many regional groups that support the FairTax, including the Small Business Association of Michigan and the Council on Small Enterprise, each group larger by numbers than many Washington associations.
John Berthoud spoke next. NTU, one of the nation’s largest and most respected taxpayer organizations, was established in 1969 to educate taxpayers, the media, and elected officials on a nonpartisan basis on the merits of limited government and low taxes. NTU uses a variety of means to accomplish their work including direct mail, research papers, public speaking, e-mail, advertising, the Internet, and lobbying.
Berthoud discussed why NTU endorses the FairTax, including its respect for privacy, the 4th Amendment, transparency, visibility, and stability. Berthoud noted that the FairTax vests every taxpayer in the tax system and restrains the growth and size of government through honesty in taxpayer spending. Berthoud also mentioned that the President’s Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform erred by failing to consider research or analyze the criteria on which their decision was based. They failed to analyze the FairTax at all.
David Burton and Dan R. Mastromarco of the Argus Group, who wrote the FairTax bill, spoke about several issues and stood by to answer questions. They discussed why the FairTax encourages economic growth and what the expected magnitude of that growth will be, according to the nation’s foremost economists. Burton discussed why the FairTax is good for trade by making the U.S. the world’s greatest tax haven. Mastromarco discussed the salient effect of the FairTax on the affordability of housing and upward mobility and how the FairTax reduces compliance costs and evasion.
AFFT intends to hold a similar briefing for Senate staffers.