Forbes: "Drive a Stake" Through the Tax Code

By Bruce Sullivan | July 7, 2008 | 8:24 PM EDT

Washington, D.C. (CNS) – GOP presidential hopeful Steve Forbes was on friendly ground today as he delivered his familiar "lower taxes, smaller government" message at the National Taxpayers Conference in Washington, D.C.

Touting his proposed 17 percent flat tax, Forbes called the current tax code – now over seven million words long and growing – a "monstrosity," and said it is time to end it.

"Like in an old Hollywood horror film," said Forbes, "we should kill it, drive a stake through its heart, bury it, and make sure it never rises again to terrorize the American people."

Forbes said that under his proposed tax plan, there would be "generous deductions" for working families, no capital gains tax, and no death tax. "The IRS should not be allowed to haunt you from beyond the grave," said Forbes.

"There should be no taxation without respiration," Forbes continued.

An underlying theme of Forbes's speech was that he, as an outsider who has never held elective office, could bring to Washington a fresh approach to the national economy that career politicians could not.

He used the projected trillion dollar budget surplus, which he said should be returned to taxpayers in the form of a tax cut, as an example. Comparing politicians to bears, Forbes said that surplus in Washington is as tempting to politicians as a pot of honey is to bears in the wild.

"The bears will come along and put their paws into honey," said Forbes. "They just can't help it."

Likewise, he said, if you have a pot of money in Washington, politicians will put their paws into it – they just can't help it.