Focus Point – Al Gore's Tax Policy

I'm Pete du Pont with the National Center for Policy Analysis. I explained last week why claims that George W. Bush's across the board tax cut is a bad idea, are simply wrong. But I didn't spend sufficient time on Al Gore's mind-numbingly complex alternative.

Consider the marriage penalty. Under Gore's plan, couples only escape it if they use the standard deduction, which excludes the 54 percent of families who itemize. And even families who don't itemize have to earn less than $60,000.

Or take the $2,000 Gore wants to add to your retirement. The fine print limits it to the "right Americans," i.e., if your family income stays below $50,000, you retire after 2009, and you don't go to school. Even then, it's so expensive Gore must balance the budget by assuming most eligible Americans won't use the plan.

This makes more sense than a simple across the board cut for everybody. I don't think so.

Those are my ideas, and at the NCPA we know ideas can change the world. I'm Pete du Pont. Next time, choice and competition.