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Charlie Crist on Tax Reform

Republican


Best to extend all tax cuts; but compromise and push later

Obama favors extending the Bush tax cuts only for households earning less than $250,000, about 98% of all taxpayers. Rubio argued, "There's a difference between compromise and cutting a deal," Rubio said. "Compromise is a good thing. Cutting deals in Washington, there's too much of that."

Meek defended Obama's economic strategy. "There were surpluses," he said. "There are no longer surpluses. So we're digging a deeper hole. And what Rubio and also Crist are representing, let's continue to dig, and trickle-down economics will work for the middle class in creating jobs."

Crist, running as an independent, straddled the positions of his rivals, supporting a compromise on the tax cuts. "I want all the tax cuts extended, but sometimes you've got to give relief to the people and they deserve it now," Crist said. "If there's a way to go ahead and do that in the short term and then after January to push for the other tax cuts, that's what I think the real solution is."

Source: Business Week coverage of 2010 Florida Senate debate Oct 25, 2010

Extend the $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers

Crist said extending the $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers would help boost home sales in Florida. "I think any time you can reduce taxation in order to spur the economy forward, that's a good thing to do and that would be great to do," he said.
Source: CNN "State of the Union" on 2010 Florida Senate debate Jul 22, 2010

Reduce the tax brackets to let private enterprise flourish

CRIST: As it relates to taxes, as somebody who believes that we need to reduce the tax brackets, we need to reduce the income tax, in order to have private enterprise flourish--we have to do that because I think that we have an obligation to have this dream called America continue to be able to prosper. We've done that in Florida. In fact, I signed into law the largest single tax cut in the history of my state. Let me talk about my opponent and what he did on taxes. He proposed the largest tax increas in the history of my state, about a $9 billion increase in taxes. He said it would be some kind of a swap and that justifies it. But it would have hit sales tax, which would have been the most regressive tax that you could imagine--in other words, meaning that people who can least afford it have to pay the same as people who can afford a lot more.

RUBIO: That program would have eliminated property taxes for all sorts of people. And it was supported by Jeb Bush.

Source: Fox News Sunday 2010 Florida primary Senate debate Mar 28, 2010

2006: Pledged no taxes; 2009: $2.2B in fees on 16M people

Q: When you were running for governor in 2006, you made a George H.W. Bush pledge, you will not raise taxes as long as you're governor. Last year you signed a $66 billion state budget that had a $2.2 billion increase in new taxes and fees. Didn't you break your promise?

CRIST: No, I don't think I did, and I'll tell you why. The only part of it that was a tax--and it's loosely defined as a tax--was on cigarettes. And I would argue that that's a user fee. If you don't use them, you don't pay it.

Q: But you also signed into law higher fees on drivers' licenses and on motor vehicle registration, motor vehicle tags. You said these aren't broad-based taxes. Governor, 16 million people are drivers in Florida. That's a pretty broad-based tax, isn't it?

Source: Fox News Sunday 2010 Florida primary Senate debate Mar 28, 2010

Reduce property taxes by doubling homestead exemption

I have set forth a plan to reduce property taxes by doubling your homestead exemption, making the save our homes protection portable and extending that protection to business and rental properties as well. Whatever form of property tax relief you decide upon, it must be comprehensive, it must bring real relief to our people, and it must be put before the voters this year. Our people deserve real relief, and with your leadership, I know they will get it.
Source: 2007 State of the State Address Mar 6, 2007

Replace income tax with a flat tax or national sales tax

Q: Do you support replacing the U.S. income tax structure with a flat income tax?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support eliminating the Internal Revenue Service?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support instituting a national sales tax?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support requiring a super-majority vote in both houses of Congress to raise taxes?

A: Yes.

Source: Congressional 1998 National Political Awareness Test Nov 1, 1998

$12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants.

Crist signed $12B in federal economic stimulus as state block grants

The nation's governors urge you to include state countercyclical funding as part of your legislation to stimulate the economy. This would include $6 billion in Medicaid assistance by freezing scheduled federal FMAP reductions and increasing all states' F Congress approved $20 billion in assistance to states, including $10 billion in Medicaid and $10 billion in block grants. The governors' current stimulus proposal is essentially the same, with the exception that it is a total of $12 billion as opposed to $20 billion. This proposal can be enacted quickly, as there is precedent and it is timely, temporary and targeted.

Additionally, governors appreciate federal efforts to use tax policy to get additional money into the hands of consumers and businesses to stimulate the economy. When considering tax changes to spur economic growth, governors urge Congress and the Administration to follow the maxim of "Do no harm" by avoiding changes at the federal level that would diminish state tax revenues or force state actions that would undermine the effectiveness of federal efforts.

We look forward to working with you to enact the appropriate stimulus program.

Source: Letter from 37 governors to House & Senate Leadership NGA-0801TX on Jan 28, 2008

Other candidates on Tax Reform: Charlie Crist on other issues:
FL Gubernatorial:
Rick Scott
FL Senatorial:
Bill Nelson
Marco Rubio

Retiring as of Jan. 2011:
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Page last updated: Nov 26, 2010