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A Blueprint for Tax Reform and Health Reform: Before the Senate Committee on Finance

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Publication Date: May 2008

Publisher(s): Tax Policy Center

Author(s): Leonard E. Burman

Special Collection: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Topic: Banking and finance (Taxation and tax policy)

Keywords: Elderly; Health Insurance; Tax Policy; Tax Distribution and Economic Trends

Type: Report


In this testimony Burman outlines a plan for tax reform that would maintain progressivity, raise enough revenues to finance the government, and dovetail with plans to provide universal access to health insurance. It would combine a value-added tax (VAT) dedicated to pay for a new universal health insurance voucher with a vastly simplified and much flatter income tax. With a new financing source for health care, income tax rates could be cut sharply-the top rates could be cut to 25 percent or less. The health care voucher would also offset the inherent regressivity of a VAT. And, under the simplified system, most Americans would not have to file income tax returns.