Grover Asks Feds for $700 Billion

Influential DC insider Grover Norquist is known for many things. Being president of ATR, sitting on the board of the NRA, and running the famous Wednesday meeting.

However after today, there might be another point added to that list.

According to The Washington Times, Grover Norquist sent a letter to the Treasury Department asking the government to give him the $700 billion.

An excerpt from the letter reads:

*I write today to formally request $700 billion from the TARP Capital Purchase Program. Since unionized auto companies, state and local governments, and certain credit card companies are applying, I thought I should, as well. Attached you will find the two-page application which I downloaded from www.treas.gov.

I am fully aware that some $125 billion has already been allocated as of October 29, 2008. However, given that the federal government has the full weight of the army, the FBI, etc. behind it, I am confident that you can re-appropriate this money from the likes of Wells Fargo (or their successor companies, if the current over-regulatory and over-taxing economic climate has caused them to go under).

I have a plan for this $700 billion which should be just what’s needed to get the American economy going. Since the money came from the taxpayers in the first place, I propose giving it back to them. With $700 billion in TARP funding, ATR would facilitate the following tax cuts:*

The tax cuts include:

Cut the corporate income tax rate from 35% to 15%, giving us one of the lowest corporate income tax rates in the developed world. We currently have the second-highest rate in the world (behind only Japan). This new 15% rate would give us the third-lowest rate in the world (ahead of only Ireland and Iceland). It would put us well below the Euro-zone average rate of 25%. Companies would be dying to set up shop in the United States. Estimated JCT cost: $170 billion.

Eliminate the capital gains and dividends tax. These rates are currently 15%, but actually represent a double-tax on corporate profits. When combined with the new, lower 15% rate on corporate income, capital costs would be at their lowest levels in nearly a century. Tax something less, and get more of it. This would also be an improvement over a suggested change we have made to the Treasury for years—allow taxpayers to index the cost basis of their capital assets to inflation (something which Treasury has the unilateral authority to do and which would be the equivalent of a 50% cut in the capital gains tax rate). Estimated JCT cost: $35 billion.

Cut the top personal income tax rate from 35% to a flat 15%. This would give the U.S. the lowest personal income tax rate in the developed world. Estimated JCT score: $235 billion.

Kill the death tax. Almost nothing is more capital-killing for small businesses and family farms than the estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer taxes. Estimated JCT score: $24 billion.

Allow companies to fully-expense capital assets purchased the first year. Under current law, businesses and other taxpayers must usually “depreciate,” or slowly-deduct, capital asset purchases the first year. This capital-boosting proposal would allow taxpayers to deduct 100% of the purchase price from their taxes in year one. Estimated JCT score: $240 billion.

That sounds like a good idea to me! Click here for the footnotes.

I’d rather them give ATR and Grover the money any day than use it to bailout the sweet-heart union pension plans over at GM (of course I am a bit partial).