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Tax Reform By the People, For the People

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Tax Reform By the People, For the People


January 23, 2006

When Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence he stated what Americans wanted from their new government. It was to be a government of the people, for the people and by the people. He did not believe that the knowledge of how to run a country was limited to those in the Capitol and neither do I.

That is why I have put together the tax reform advisory council which will meet for the first time this week. This group is made up of Missourians with wide ranging viewpoints from farmers to CPA to economics professors. I don't know what answer they will come up with, but it cannot be anymore complicated or unfair than what we already have.

I believe that most Missourians are over-taxed. I also believe we spend too much time figuring out how much money we owe the government. Every year many of us seek help to prepare our tax returns simply because our nation's tax code is so large and complex that we don't have the time or expertise to do it ourselves.

From the Alternative Minimum Tax, which you pay if the government determines you haven't paid enough taxes, to the double taxation of dividends, our tax code is full of different rules for different groups. I think that is fundamentally unfair. America should have only one tax code and it ought to apply evenly to everyone.

After 230 years I think it is high time that we have a tax code made by the people, for the people.

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