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«Will Hurd (TX-23) Research Report The following report contains research on Will Hurd, a Republican member of Congress in Texas’ 23rd district. ...»

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Effective January 1, 2009 it replaces the above taxes with a national retail sales tax on all goods and services sold at retail. The tax rate is set to be revenue neutral – at the level necessary to replace the revenues generated by the repealed taxes. … A 23-percent (of the tax-inclusive sales price) sales tax is imposed on all retail sales for personal consumption of new goods and services. Exports and the purchase of inputs by businesses (i.e., intermediate sales) are not taxed, nor are used goods or any savings, investment, or education tuition expenses. [Americans for Fair Taxation, “The Fair Tax Act of 2007 – HR 25: Plain English Summary,” fairtax.org, accessed 7/30/08] …Including Food. Fairtax.org an organization dedicated to the implementation of the Fair Tax specifically addresses the question “Why not just exempt food and medicine from the tax?” in the frequently asked questions section of their website. According to the group, “Exempting items by category is neither fair nor simple.” [Fairtax.org FAQ] …Including Medicine. Fairtax.org an organization dedicated to the implementation of the Fair Tax specifically addresses the question “Why not just exempt food and medicine from the tax?” in the frequently asked questions section of their website. According to the group, “Exempting items by category is neither fair nor simple.” [Fairtax.org FAQ] …Including Clothing.

According to FairTax.org, new clothing would be taxed under the Fair Tax:

The FairTax is a single-rate, federal retail sales tax collected only once, at the final point of purchase of new goods and services for personal consumption. Used items are not taxed. Business-to-business purchases for the production of goods and services are not taxed. A rebate makes the effective rate progressive. [Fairtax.org FAQ] …Including Gas. Factcheck.org, an organization that checks the validity of claims made in political advertising and other media, confirmed that the Fair Tax would not only apply to gasoline, but would be placed on top of existing taxes.

According to Factcheck.org, the list would include:

 Purchases of new homes  Rent  Interest on credit cards, mortgages and car loans  Doctor bills  Utilities  Gasoline  Legal fees [Factcheck.org, “Unspinning the Fair Tax,” 5/31/07] …Though Fair Tax Hits Families Paying Their Mortgage. By supporting the Fair Tax, Hurd supports eliminating federal tax deductions for mortgage and property taxes, which would raise taxes for the middle-class.

Fair Tax Would Eliminate the Mortgage Interest Deduction. According to Americans for Fair Taxation, an organization that supports a shift from our federal and state tax system to a 23% national sales tax, the Fair Tax would make mortgage interest deductions “irrelevant.” In a 2007 report the organization released on the impact of the Fair Tax on home ownership, Americans for Fair Taxation state that the new tax system would treat home purchases like any other

retail good. From the Americans for Fair Taxation report:

“Under the FairTax, the purchase of a home, just like the purchase of a car, food, or any good or service for personal use is seen for what it is: An item of consumption. Since the FairTax taxes all consumption without exception (except previously taxed goods and services), the FairTax imposes a 23 percent (tax-inclusive rate) tax on the purchase price of new homes.” The report goes on to say that the FairTax “taxes new homes at 23 percent and repeals the income tax along with the [mortgage interest deduction].” [American for Fair Taxation, “Promoting Home Ownership: How the Fair Tax’s Benefits for Homeowners Exceed the Mortgage Interest Deduction,” 2007, accessed 9/17/08] …Though Fair Tax Double Taxes Our Seniors Under the Fair Tax, seniors would be taxed twice.

Seniors Who Saved Would Face Double Tax Under Fair Tax System According to PolitiFact.com,

seniors who had saved their money would face a “double tax” under the Fair Tax system:

“Then we checked with the SEIU. They acknowledged that the Fair Tax would be a replacement for the current tax system. But they made an interesting point -- that for seniors, the explicit target audience for the ad, there is something that you might call double taxation.

For many years, seniors paid taxes on their income when they earned it. Whatever they didn’t spend, they saved, and in their retirement years, when they aren’t earning fresh income that would be tax-free under the Fair Tax, those accumulated savings would be spent -- and thus taxed at 23 percent. Voila -- double taxation.” [politifact.com, 10/20/10] Economic Experts Agreed the Fair Tax Would Double Tax Seniors. In 2010, former Reagan and Bush administration official Bruce Bartlett and Urban Institute-Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center senior fellow Bob Williams both said that the Fair Tax would double tax seniors: “Bartlett said the proposal ‘penalizes those who are older who have saved for their retirement during an era when saving was heavily penalized by the income tax. But rather than being able to spend their savings tax free, as they anticipated, they will now have to pay sales taxes on everything they buy, including health care. It will be hard for them to avoid seeing this as a double tax. Bob Williams, a senior fellow with the Urban Institute-Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center, agreed that the Fair Tax doubletaxes savings.” [politifact.com, 10/20/10]

Supported Eliminating the IRS

Supported Eliminating the IRS. In January 2014, Hurd said in a debate that he would support abolishing the IRS and revamping the tax code. “Physician Robert Lowry and former CIA agent Will Hurd largely agreed on goals including abolishing the IRS, revamping the tax code and eliminating the Affordable Care Act known as Obamacare,” the San Antonio Express-News reported. [San Antonio Express-News, 1/16/14] National Review Opinion Editor: Eliminating IRS “Probably Isn’t Feasible And Has Almost No Merits As A Public Policy. “The basic idea, according to Cruz’s speeches and a conversation I had with a Cruz adviser, is this: If you radically simplify the individual-income-tax code, you can reduce the size of the federal tax-collection bureaucracy so much that you could then get rid of the IRS and disperse its functions across other agencies. This is a great applause line: Americans hate how complicated their taxes are, and they hate the IRS. It’s such a good line, in fact, that other probable presidential candidates, such as Senator Rand Paul and neurosurgeon Ben Carson, have adopted it too.

The problem: The idea probably isn’t feasible and has almost no merits as a public policy.” [National Review, 4/23/15] Column Headline: You Can’t – And Shouldn’t – Abolish The IRS. [National Review, 4/23/15] Called For The President To Fire IRS Commissioner John Koskinen For “Making False Statements To Congress” Called For The President TO Fire IRS Commissioner John Koskinen For “Making False Statements To Congress.” “Yesterday, U.S. Representative Will Hurd from Texas joined his Republican colleagues on the Committee for Oversight and Government Reform in calling for the President to fire IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. Citing Koskinen’s failure to comply with a congressional subpoena and for making false statements to Congress.” [Hurd.House.Gov, 7/28/15]Said that Lowering Taxes Would Increase Revenues Said That Lowering Taxes Would Increase Revenues Said that Lowering Taxes Would Increase Revenues. “Our government needs to go to a low tax, low spend model and that’s going to also help increase the amount of revenues we’re getting in.” [2010 4.1 TX23 Debate Part 2, 13:15] Voted Against Motion To Analyze Long-Term Impact Of Special Interest Tax Loopholes Voted Against Motion To Analyze Long-Term Impact Of Tax Loopholes. In February 2016, Hurd voted against on the motion to recommit on legislation to analyze “the long-term impact that tax loopholes abused by special interests have on American businesses, American workers, and our economy.” The motion failed, 179 to 238. [HR 3442, Vote #75, 2/11/16; Democratic Leader, 2/11/16] Trade Issues

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 Voted against Trade Promotion Authority when it was paired with the extension of Trade Adjustment Assistance despite Texas’ having received $38,666,669 in funding through TAA for job training and related programs  Voted to grant Trade Promotion Authority when it was not paired with funding to help retrain displaced workers  Voted to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank when it was attached to the highway funding bill after he’d already voted nine times to block votes to reauthorize it Hurd voted against extending Trade Adjustment Assistance programs to help US workers displaced by foreign competition due to trade even though Texas received $38,666,669 to support such programs in FY 2014 alone. Despite voting against providing Trade Promotion Authority when it was paired with extending TAA programs, Hurd voted to grant the President fast-track authority when it was separated from TAA extension. Hurd voted to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank as part of the highway bill after it was attached to the bill through an amendment but he had already voted nine times to block votes to reauthorize it.

Voted Against Extension Of Trade Adjustment Assistance

Voted Against Extension Of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). In June 2015, Hurd voted against a “motion to concur in the Senate amendment to the bill that would provide Trade Promotion Authority for trade agreements negotiated by the administration, under which they would be considered by Congress under expedited procedures without amendment, and would extend Trade Adjustment Assistance programs to help displaced U.S. workers. The portion of the Senate amendment covered by the division would reauthorize, through June 30, 2021, trade adjustment assistance programs and alternative trade adjustment assistance for workers laid off because of the impact of foreign competition. Offsets would include an extension of certain customs fees and prevention of certain taxpayers with high levels of foreign income from receiving the refundable portion of the child tax credit.” The motion failed 126-302.

[HR 1314, Vote #361; CQ Floor Votes, 6/12/15] NYT: TAA Failing Would Cripple President Obama’s Trade Agenda. “Hours after President Obama made a dramatic, personal appeal for support, House Democrats on Friday thwarted his push to expand trade negotiating power — and quite likely his chance to secure a legacy-defining accord spanning the Pacific Ocean. In a remarkable blow to a president they have backed so resolutely, House Democrats voted to end assistance to workers displaced by global trade, a program their party created and has supported for four decades. That move effectively scuttled legislation granting the president trade promotion authority — the power to negotiate trade deals that cannot be amended or filibustered by Congress.” [New York Times, 6/12/15] Texas Received $38,666,669 In Trade Adjustment Assistance In FY2014 To Carry Out Training And Other Activities. For FY 2014, Texas received $38,666,669 in federal payments for “funds to provide training, job search allowances, relocation allowances, employment and case management services to trade-affected workers, and for related state administrative costs.” [Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration, FY 2014 Annual Report]

Voted For Granting Trade Promotion Authority

Voted For Concurring In Senate Amendment To Grant The President Trade Promotion Authority.

In June 2015, Hurd voted for Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). “The House on Thursday took the first step toward resuscitating the White House’s trade agenda by passing legislation granting President Obama fast-track authority … This is the second time in a week the House has voted to approve the controversial fast-track bill. On Friday, the House voted 219-211 in favor of fast-track, which would make it easier for Obama to complete a sweeping trans-Pacific trade deal … House Democrats have historically favored TAA, but they voted against it on Friday to kill fast-track, which is deeply opposed by unions and other liberal groups.” The amendment passed 218 to 208. [HR 2146, Vote #374, 6/18/15; The Hill, 6/18/15] Voted To Re-Authorize The Export-Import Bank After It Was Attached To Highway Bill Voted For Bill To Re-Authorize The Export-Import Bank. In October 2015, Hurd voted for HR 597.

“Lawmakers are trying to complete work on a long-term bill by Nov. 20, the date the current authorization expires. Backers of the Ex-Im Bank see attaching its reauthorization (HR 597) to the highway bill to be the best chance of renewing its charter that expired at the end of June.” The bill passed 313 to 118. [HR 597, Vote #576, 10/27/15; CQ News, 11/5/15] Bill Was Advanced To Vote By The Little-Used Discharge Petition That Forced House To vote On The Legislation Against The Wishes Of Party Leadership. “If Republicans aren’t already divided enough, several dozen party members have signed a petition that will force the House to vote on whether to revive a controversial government-run bank that helps big American companies sell goods overseas. Some 41 Republicans signed a so-called discharge petition in an effort to fully reopen the Export-Import Bank. They joined ranks with nearly all Democrats to meet the 218-vote threshold required to allow a bill to reach the House floor…. A discharge petition is an obscure technique used to force a vote on an issue against the wishes of party leadership. They are rarely used and rarely succeed.” [MarketWatch, 10/09/15]

Voted 9 Times To Block Votes To Reauthorize The Export-Import Bank

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