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September 30. 2014

Momentum for Business Tax Reform Gaining Steam

Below are excerpts from recent stories demonstrating growing momentum to reform America’s corporate tax system, including former President Clinton and leading national editorial boards:

Former President Clinton: “America has to face the fact that we have not reformed our corporate tax laws…We have the highest overall corporate tax rates in the world. And we are now the only OECD country that also taxes overseas earnings on the difference between what the companies pay overseas and what they pay in America.” [CNBC, 9/23/14]

Washington Post Editorial: “If there is room for post-election agreement between Republicans and Democrats on any economic issue, it could be an overhaul of the loophole-ridden system of business taxation, the broad principles of which are recognized by leaders of both parties.” [Washington Post, 9/23/14]

Wall Street Journal Editorial: “With the developed world’s highest corporate tax rate at over 39% including state levies, plus a rare demand that money earned overseas should be taxed as if it were earned domestically, the U.S. is almost in a class by itself… the White House and Congress should enact reform that invites more businesses to stay or move to the U.S.” [Wall Street Journal, 9/14/14]

Bloomberg Editorial: “Lew’s announcement…fails to address the main issue: the need to reform the byzantine U.S. corporate tax system.” [Bloomberg 9/23/14]

Columbus Dispatch Editorial: “The U.S. has the highest corporate tax rate in the world. The combined national, state and city tax rates in the United States, termed the nominal corporate tax rate, is the highest among developed nations. The U.S. rate is just under 40 percent; Canada’s is 26 percent. And unlike almost every other nation, American tax law requires companies based here to pay U.S. taxes not only on money earned domestically, but also on money earned overseas. This puts U.S. companies at a financial and therefore competitive disadvantage… lawmakers should seize this opportunity to finally pass sensible corporate-tax reform that lowers rates and closes loopholes.” [Columbus Dispatch, 8/30/14]

Detroit News Editorial: “The United States ranks 32nd, ahead of just Portugal and France, according to the Tax Foundation, a free market institute…That the country that taught the world the principles of capitalism and free markets now ranks so poorly should shame American policymakers… Tax competitiveness is a good indicator of economic competitiveness, and thus growth. The U.S. recovery has been sluggish, in no small part because of tax and regulatory policies that dampen growth.” [Detroit News, 9/17/14]

Chicago Sun-Times Editorial: “The U.S. tax code punishes American corporations by taxing their earnings overseas, something no other major nation does. That provision has $2 trillion in U.S. business cash parked abroad instead of returned for domestic investment. That competitive disadvantage is on top of the U.S. corporate tax rate of 35 percent, the highest in the developed world.” [Chicago Sun-Times, 8/27/14]

Denver Post Editorial: “The real solution involves restructuring the corporate tax code to eliminate a variety of loopholes, lowering the tax rate to bring it more in line with the rest of the world, and moving to a system where the U.S. doesn’t try to impose its tax rate on income earned abroad.” [Denver Post, 8/10/14]