Giuliani Touts His Tax Cut Plan as 'Largest Ever'

By Susan Jones | July 7, 2008 | 8:32 PM EDT

( - Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani on Wednesday released details on his "multi-trillion-dollar tax cut" that "would easily exceed the level of the Reagan or Bush tax cuts," his campaign said.

"This package is the most pro-growth tax cut of any GOP presidential candidate," Giuliani said.

Giuliani announced the plan in Melbourne, Fla., but only after a bomb threat forced him to move from a corporate headquarters to an airport hangar. No bomb was found.

Giuliani said he wants to make all the Bush tax cuts permanent. That includes the full repeal of the tax on estates (death tax).

He would index the alternative minimum tax (AMT) to inflation, and eventually repeal it. (The AMT, intended to prevent wealthy people from avoiding taxes, now ensnares millions of middle-class filers and is a source of growing frustration.)

Giuliani said he also wants to reduce the corporate income tax from the current 35 percent to 25 percent, which would be "more in line with our European competitors," his campaign said.

The Giuliani plan slashes the capital gains and qualified dividends tax rate from 15 percent to 10 percent (and indexes capital assets to inflation), which will boost the value of every American's 401(k) and IRA, Giuliani said.

The plan also replaces dozens of tax-advantaged savings accounts with a simplified system of Retirement Savings Accounts and Lifetime Savings Accounts. And it gives all Americans the ability to purchase health insurance pre-tax through a health care standard deduction.

"This tax cut -- the largest in history -- would represent a monumental leap forward for the American taxpayer and the U.S. economy," said ATR President Grover Norquist. He said the lowering the corporate income tax and capital gains tax "is just what is needed to keep us from falling into recession."

In addition, the Giuliani tax cut plan creates a simplified Fair And Simple Tax (FAST) system that American families and small businesses could choose to use each year. The FAST plan offers three tax brackets, a 30 percent top rate, and only the most popular deductions.

"Most Americans, when given the choice to go into this simplified system, will flock toward it and never switch back," said Norquist. He pointed to Hong Kong, where the people have embraced an alternative tax system for years.

In addition to his tax cut proposal, Giuliani has committed in writing to the American people to oppose and veto all tax increases.

The no-tax-hike pledge -- written by Norquist's Ameicans for Tax Reform -- has been adopted by every Republican presidential candidate except John McCain and Fred Thompson. It hasn't been adopted by any Democrat presidential hopeful.

And how would Giuliani pay for his huge tax-cut package? Stay tuned. Giuliani, in an interview on Bloomberg Television Wednesday, said he'll explain in the weeks ahead how he plans to pay for his tax cuts.

He told Bloomberg Television the plan includes reductions in federal spending (including staff reductions). And he argues that lower taxes will pay for themselves by boosting businesses.

Giuliani placed fourth in the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday, and he came in last in Iowa. Instead of concentrating on those early-contest states, he's staking his presidential hopes on the Florida primary. A win there, he figures, would give him momentum going into the Super Tuesday on Feb. 5.

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