America is in need of a serious tax overhaul if we are to compete in a globalized economy. When the modern tax code was established in 1913, it contained roughly 400 pages of laws and regulations. Since then, the Federal tax code has grown dramatically and now stands at 70,000 pages! In the last 10 years, there have been more than 4,400 changes. Many of the major alterations made to the tax code over the years involved carving out special preferences, exclusions, or deductions for various activities or groups. These special tax breaks and preferences now add up to more than $1 trillion per year in lost revenue for the Federal Government. Both parties are guilty of this abuse and it is one of the many things I hope to address while serving as your Congressman.
While our tax code is riddled with loopholes, it is also extremely uncompetitive. The U.S. corporate income tax (incorporating Federal, state and local taxes) adds up to just over 39 percent, the highest in the industrialized world. This tax disparity discourages investment and job creation, distorts business activity and puts American businesses at a competitive disadvantage against foreign competitors. Other nations across the world are lowering their corporate tax rate to lure businesses to move to their country -- Canada just lowered their rate to 15 percent in January 2012. Failure to address this issue will only leave the United States with an ever-shrinking role in a globalized economy.
The solutions to these problems come from simplifying the tax code to promote job creation and more economic growth. By closing unnecessary loopholes, we can then lower tax rates, which will pump more money into the economy. This is vital to Americans all across the country but especially to the families and businesses throughout the Ninth District, who are concerned about the economic damage resulting from higher taxes.
In these challenging times, raising taxes on individuals and small businesses is irresponsible. Now more than ever, North Carolina families should be allowed to keep more of their money and reinvest it into our economy. As this debate moves forward I promise to work with a bipartisan coalition to lower tax rates, broaden the tax base and promote economic prosperity. This has been done before; President Ronald Reagan's tax reforms inaugurated an era of great success. It is time to build upon his leadership and advance a fundamental and sustainable reform of the broken tax code to put Americans back to work.