Our current tax system is a mess and an embarrassment. It's virtually impossible for law-abiding citizens to be certain they've filled out their returns properly. A fair, flat tax could collect all the revenue the government needs and save Americans time and worry. We could file our returns on the back of a postcard.
Wyden says he wants to help deliver this fairer, flatter system, but that will require real persistence. He has, alas, disappointed tax reformers before. This is the same man who voted to repeal the death tax in 2002 but flip-flopped this year and voted to keep that pernicious tax alive. And if we look at the fine print of his tax-reform plan, it appears that he's better at rhetoric than real change. His so-called reform would leave tax rates at 35 percent and actually increase the double-taxation of savings and investment.
But if Wyden abandons class-warfare politics and fights for the right sort of reform, he could have a chance to join the political immortals. He also could help all taxpayers and improve the American economy at the same time. Fixing the tax code will be difficult, but it's not impossible. It's time to get it done.
Ed Feulner is president of the Heritage Foundation.