Leonard, Fitzgerald Article on Presidential Candidates’ Tax Plans Published by Law360

“A Look At The Tax Plans Of Presidential Candidates,” an article written by Akin Gump public law and policy partner Robert Leonard and senior counsel Jayne Fitzgerald, has been published by Law360.

The article, which originated as a client alert (read here) looks at the “wide variety of tax policy positions and plans for tax reform” produced by the Republican and Democratic candidates for the presidency of the United States and discusses the themes sketched out.

The authors note that, generally, “Republicans [are] favoring lower rates overall and Democrats seeking to ease the tax burden on middle-class taxpayers. Candidates in both parties seem focused on the need for stimulating economic growth.”

Looking at the Republicans, they observe that, “A number of Republican candidates favor some version of a ‘flat’ tax rate on personal income, with proposals ranging from 10 to 15 percent based on income levels…Another priority for Republican candidates appears to be lowering the corporate tax rate to encourage investment in the United States and the repatriation of foreign earnings.”

Regarding the Democrats, the authors write, “Clinton has expressed support for lowering the tax burden on middle-class taxpayers. In addition, Clinton has indicated that, if elected, she would close several business tax ‘loopholes,’ including the current tax treatment of carried interest. Clinton has also stated that she opposes the current tax incentives for oil and gas companies and would seek to end them,” while Bernie Sanders “has proposed to increase and restructure the estate tax…expressed support for an additional 10 percent surtax on estates valued at more than $1 billion…[and] sponsored legislation that would change the current tax rules for corporate inversions and earnings stripping by foreign companies, and another bill that would prohibit U.S. corporations from deferring federal income taxes on profits of offshore subsidiaries.”

Leonard and Fitzgerald close by noting that, although most candidates have not provided many specifics regarding their tax reform plans, “a general consensus for comprehensive tax reforms appears to be developing on both sides of the aisle. However…‘tax reform’ means many different things to different candidates. At this point, the developing consensus appears to be one of theoretical agreement that the current tax system is broken — measured by its complexity, inefficiency and policy sclerosis.”

To read the full article, please click here.