Commentary

Senator Introduces 17% Flat Tax Bill To Reduce Tax Returns 'To The Size Of A Postcard'

By Craig Bannister | January 29, 2013 | 4:18pm EST

Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) today introduced a bill to replace the tax code with a 17% flat tax that would reduce tax returns to "the size of a postcard."

Shelby's Simplified, Manageable And Responsible Tax (SMART) Act establishes a flat tax rate of 17 percent on all income (personal and business).

It also repeals estate taxes, gift taxes, and the Alternative Minimum Tax (ATM).

The only exemptions would be personal exemptions of:

  • $14,070 for a single person;
  • $17,970 for a head of household;
  • $28,140 for a married couple filing jointly; and
  • $6,070 for each dependent

These allowances would also be indexed to the consumer price index in order to prevent inflation from raising Americans' tax burden.  To prevent the double-taxation of income, earnings from savings would not be included as taxable income, resulting in an immediate tax cut for virtually all taxpayers.

"With the SMART Act in place, taxpayers would file a return the size of a postcard," Shelby's office says.

"There would be no more long hours spent poring over convoluted IRS forms and no more fees paid for professional tax assistance."

I wonder what H&R Block and TurboTax would think of that.

See more "Right Views, Right Now."

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