Articles by Phil Kerpen

The EPA's Blueprint for Disaster

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A new regulatory regime from our environmental bureaucrats would grind the economy to a halt.

By Phil Kerpen

Opponents of massive new energy taxes and regulations breathed a small sigh of relief last month when the Lieberman-Warner climate-tax bill went down in flames on the Senate floor. Even 10 Democrats broke from the party line and voted against it, writing that they would have opposed the bill on final passage. Unfortunately, power-mad bureaucrats at the Environmental Protection Agency remain undaunted.

The EPA is expected today to release a document that blueprints a dizzying array of greenhouse-gas regulatory programs under dozens of different provisions of the 1970 Clean Air Act. The document, called an “Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking,” will formally begin the process of implementing restrictions more draconian than those in the Lieberman-Warner bill -- all without a single vote of Congress.



Payment-Card Reporting Nonsense

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Another expensive bad idea from congressional Democrats.

By Phil Kerpen

Last week the House Ways and Means Committee marked up the so-called Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008. As expected, the Democrats are proposing several permanent tax hikes in exchange for a provision to protect the middle class from the unintended consequences of the AMT. What wasn’t expected was the addition of a nasty new regulation.

The bill now includes a $30.98 billion capital-gains tax increase on the carried interest of general partners in investment partnerships and a $13.57 billion income-tax hike for oil companies. Basis reporting, which would require financial firms to report capital-gains basis information to the IRS, was thankfully not included in the bill. However, payment-card reporting was. This is real bad news.



Rangel Sticks to His Tax-Hiking Guns

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Fixing the AMT could come at a high price.

By Phil Kerpen

House Ways and Means chairman Charlie Rangel is once again jeopardizing legislation that would reduce the incidence of the alternative minimum tax (AMT), holding it hostage to growth-crippling tax hikes. He bragged last week that when it comes to tax hikes, he and House Democrats are “sticking to [their] guns.” If he succeeds, he’s got enough bullets to take down taxpayers and the U. S. economy.




Just Say No to Climate-Tax Hikes

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Cap-and-trade means higher taxes and a dramatic expansion in the size and scope of government.

By Phil Kerpen

The climate-change issue has divided conservatives, with presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain leading the charge for a cap-and-trade energy-rationing scheme and Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe spearheading the opposition — which includes my group, Americans for Prosperity, and most movement conservatives. Building a consensus on the issue looks complicated, but it’s as simple as one word: taxes. We should build from the premise that climate policy must not be used as a cover for raising federal revenue.



Tanker Earmark Won't Fly

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By Phil Kerpen
May 6, 2008

The Air Force needs a new tanker fleet-in fact the Air Force identified the new KC-45 tanker as its number one procurement priority, because the existing Eisenhower-era tanker fleet needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, this critical military asset has been delayed by an egregious pork-barrel earmark scandal, and, if some members of Congress and the chattering classes have their way, could be derailed once again by the closed door earmark process.



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