Democratic attack ads against GOP House candidates who support a 23 percent national sales tax are causing a stir in several states, with Republicans demanding that TV stations drop them.
The ads, running in seven House districts, target Republicans who support HR 25. The bill would eliminate the federal income tax, estate tax and payroll taxes and replace them with a 23 percent sales tax. The issue has been a mainstay in the Senate race in South Carolina, but the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's ads have expanded it to three House districts in Texas and one each in Georgia, Indiana, Kansas and North Carolina.
Indeed, if you look at Inez Tenenbaum's web page (she's the Democratic candidate for Senate in SC), most of the ads criticize her opponent for supporting a national sales tax. Here's a typical excerpt:
My opponent, Jim DeMint, has a big idea. A new 23 percent federal sales tax on just about everything we buy. Like milk, bread and groceries. Clothing, new tires, going to the movies. Even prescription drugs. What we really ought to do is cut taxes on middle class families.DeMint, along with Tom DeLay and over 50 Republican members of Congress, has endorsed a national sales tax that would replace almost all federal taxes. Tenenbaum's ads are a little misleading, because they don't mention that DeMint envisages eliminating other federal taxes. (she has a press release that's more accurate). On the other hand, she doesn't challenge DeMint's 23% figure, even though most experts say a rate of 50-60% would be needed for a "revenue-neutral" replacement tax.