Is Obama planning a VAT surprise for America?
So John Podesta, co-chairman of Obama’s presidential transition team, says a value-added tax is “more plausible today” than ever, adding that “there’s going to have to be revenue in this budget.” A few thoughts:
1) Podesta is also president of the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank closely allied with the White House.
2) It’s consensus among centrist economists, like those in the White House, that America will need to raise taxes to cover budget shortfalls and a VAT is the most efficient way of doing this.
3) At the G20, Obama promised more coordinated economic policies, including having the US lower its borrowing and consume less. This could be done via a VAT, which would also let the US have more tax synchronization with other OECD countries.
4) It seems like the WH is staring to redefine its pledge not to raise taxes on those making less than 250k as applying only to income taxes.
Bottom line: These Podesta remarks sure sound like a trial balloon by the White House.