Tax Reform Should Focus on the Middle Class

Lawmakers should reform the tax code so that it is simpler and fairer for the middle class and raises revenue for investments in future economic growth.

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How can tax policy strengthen the middle class?

This is the key question that policymakers should be asking themselves as they think about tax reform. Middle-class families are struggling as their incomes stagnate or fall and the costs of housing, education, and health care rise. A weak middle class holds back economic growth and undermines our democracy.

Tax policy can and should play a critical role in rebuilding the middle class.

Unfortunately, for most of the past three decades, Congress has designed tax policy to benefit the top 1 percent of Americans under the “trickle-down” theory—that these so-called job creators will expand the economy for everyone. In fact, these supply-side tax policies have been clear failures; the economy works best when it grows from the middle out.

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