Jeb Bush proposes 'simple, fair and clear' tax laws

AP News
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Posted: Sep 09, 2015 3:06 PM
Jeb Bush proposes 'simple, fair and clear' tax laws

MIAMI (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush's tax plan calls for a lower corporate rate and immediate deductions for business investments.

The former Florida governor also wants to reduce the number of personal income tax brackets from seven to three, with the lowest rate at 10 percent.

"Today, the tax code is a labyrinth littered with thousands of special-interest giveaways, subsidies and other breaks written to favor Washington insiders," he wrote in Wednesday's Wall Street Journal.

Bush said he wants to create a tax system that is "simple, fair and clear," and predicts his proposal would help accelerate U.S. economic growth.

Bush, who trails in the polls nationally and in early primary states, has come out with several policy proposals in recent weeks, trying to combat front-runner Donald Trump. The billionaire businessman has unleashed a flurry of personal attacks against Bush.

Bush is proposing individual tax rates of 10 percent, 15 percent and 28 percent. Currently, there are seven tax brackets, ranging from 10 percent to 39.6 percent. Bush said 15 million people would not pay any tax under his plan.

He proposes doubling the standard deduction, eliminating the marriage penalty, expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit and ending the estate tax and Alternative Minimum Tax.

He would end the employee's share of the Social Security tax on earnings for workers 67 and older.

Bush wants to reduce the corporate income tax from 35 percent — among the highest in the world — to 20 percent and give businesses the chance to deduct new capital investments immediately. He also wants to eliminate the deduction for interest on business loans.

Democrats called the plan "more trickle-down Bush economics."

"Bush is embracing a disastrous economic agenda that benefits himself, and those like himself, while leaving the middle class out to dry," said Holly Shulman, a spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee.

Bush planned to offer more details during a visit Wednesday to North Carolina manufacturer.

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This story has been corrected to show that the top tax rate Bush is proposing for individuals is 28 percent, not 25 percent.