By Michael J. Graetz
This fast moving ebook by way of Yale professors Michael Graetz and Ian Shapiro unravels the subsequent secret: How is it that the property tax, which has been at the books regularly due to the fact that 1916 and is paid through purely the wealthiest percentage of usa citizens, was once repealed in 2001 with extensive bipartisan aid? The secret is the entire extra extraordinary as the repeal used to be no longer performed at the hours of darkness, like a congressional pay bring up. It got here on the finish of a multiyear populist crusade introduced through a number of members, and used to be heralded by means of its supporters as a sign fulfillment for americans who're dedicated to the paintings ethic and the yankee Dream.
Graetz and Shapiro carried out wide-ranging interviews with the appropriate gamers: contributors of congress, senators, staffers from the main committees and the Bush White apartment, civil servants, imagine tank and curiosity workforce representatives, etc. the result's a different portrait of yankee politics as seen throughout the lens of the dying tax repeal saga. Graetz and Shapiro brilliantly light up the repeal campaign's many desirable and unforeseen turns--particularly the ordinary outcome wherein the repeal is slated to self-destruct a decade after its passage. They convey that the stakes during this struggle are really excessive; the very survival of the lengthy status American consensus on revolutionary taxation is being threatened.
Graetz and Shapiro's wealthy narrative reads extra like a political drama than a standard paintings of scholarship. but each web page is suffused by means of their intimate wisdom of the historical past of the tax code, the transformation of yankee conservatism during the last 3 a long time, and the broader political implications of battles over tax policy.
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Additional resources for Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Fight over Taxing Inherited Wealth
When he introduced this new legislation, Senator Grassley made an offhand remark that foreshadowed the train wreck to come. ” Technical improvements indeed. With further modifications, Grassley’s legislation, now known as QFOBI (Qualified Family Owned Business Interests) was included as part of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, the first tax cut enacted under the Clinton presidency. QFOBI received additional changes in the IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998. By the time Congress was finished, nearly 2,600 words of confusion had been added to the estate tax law.
But their efforts were largely symbolic politics; votes came down strictly along partisan lines through early 1999, without much chance of anything passing. Most of the Senate action centered around QFOBI and various other compromise proposals. In these tussles, Senate Democrats such as John Breaux of Louisiana, Patty Murray of Washington, and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota competed with Republicans Bob Dole of Kansas, Charles Grassley of Iowa, and Don Nickles of Oklahoma to shape an exception that would win the day.
Her demeanor, as well as her language, makes it obvious that she sees the estate tax as immoral and unfair. Dunn even believes that if the leaders of the life insurance industry—which has much to lose from repeal—only understood the issue, they too would come around. It is easy to see why she is universally considered repeal’s most effective congressional advocate. ” It was no accident that Jennifer Dunn stood directly behind President Bush when he signed the 2001 tax act. She had done a great deal to make that bill a reality.
Death by a Thousand Cuts: The Fight over Taxing Inherited Wealth by Michael J. Graetz