"Read my lips: no new taxes."
Those words were spoken by then presidential candidate George H. W. Bush at the 1988 Republican National Convention.
Our #30Issues in 30 Weeks election series continues. This week we ask: who should pay how much in taxes? And where did the federal income tax come from?
Listen to the first few minutes of the segment above to hear a quick, archival tour of American politicians and the promises they've made (and broken) in the name of taxes.
Then, Joseph Thorndike, director of the Tax History Project at Tax Analysts and an Adjunct Professor at the Northwestern University School of Law, discusses the history of taxes in America and the changes to income and corporate taxes throughout the different presidencies.
So here are the two main myths, as Thorndike sees them:
High taxes will kill growth. There's plenty of evidence to show that's not true, says Thorndike, pointing to periods of high taxation and economic growth in the 1950s and 1990s.
Tax rates really do
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