This morning, House Budget Committee Chairman and Wisconsin’s First District Representative Paul Ryan released a new video – 3 Steps to Pro-Growth Tax Reform - outlining a bipartisan path forward to simplify the federal tax code and make our nation’s economy more competitive and more conducive to job creation. In addition to a behind the sceneslook last week, Rep. Ryan discussed the need for pro-growth policies in an interview with Greta Van Susteren. Excerpts of the interview follow:
Small business owners have made clear: the President’s looming tax hikes fuel uncertainty: “I did a town hall meeting with Racine County just before I came over here, over the phone, and talked to four small business owners who are telling me uncertainty is the problem. I did all these roundtables with manufacturers in Wisconsin in August- uncertainty is plaguing them. The key question they ask me is: What's the government going to do to me next? What are my taxes going to be in 2013? What are these new regulations going to do to me?
“And those are the things that are not being addressed in this new jobs bill the President's sending us, but those are the things that our job creators are telling us they need that kind of certainty so they can actually start planning and investing and having confidence.”
Obama Administration is doubling down on failed policies of the past: “Permanent tax increases to pay for a temporary spending binge is not good economics. And whenever we've done these things in the past, they haven't created jobs. That's why people like me are saying, here's an area where most of us agree: We have a tax system that's making us less competitive, that's hurting jobs and injecting tons of uncertainty for job creators. Let's deal with that.
“We passed a lot of ideas in the House to help create jobs -- energy policy, regulatory reform. They're just stacking up in the Senate, where they haven't been acted on. This is one of those ideas where we would like to see an effort because we do hear Democrats say that they want to do [tax reform].”
The need to reduce government-imposed barriers and spur private-sector growth “Congress is putting special exceptions in the tax code for certain activities and certain industries. And what that ends up doing is it helps incumbent businesses protect their market share. It erects a barrier to entry against other would-be smaller businesses and in the -- at the same time, in order to raise the revenue for the government, you have to have higher tax rates as a result of it.
“So we're saying get rid of the loopholes, lower everybody's tax rates so that the determinant of whether a business fails or succeeds is not some congressman putting a loophole in the tax code but whether or not they have a good product, whether or not they're innovative. That's the kind of thing that we need to spur growth and economic ingenuity in this country.”
Tax reform provides certainty, confidence that investors and businesses need: “What the tax code is being used for today is to try and micromanage and social engineer economic activity instead of just raising a proper amount of revenue for the government in the most efficient way possible so we can maximize economic growth and remove barriers from businesses that want to get started, that want to invest.You know, all the small business people I met with throughout the month of August at home and in Wisconsin are telling me, I have no idea what my tax rates are going to be in 2013. So why on earth would I invest and take a risk when I don't even know what it's going to cost me in just a year-and-a-half time? Those are the kinds of things that are putting a chilling effect on job creation, and more borrowing and spending today in whatever you want to call a ‘stimulus package’, I just think it's a poor substitute for actually fixing these broken problems.”