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In his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, President Obama noted that "both Democrats and Republicans have argued that our tax code is riddled with wasteful, complicated loopholes that punish businesses investing here." The following morning, three experts joined AEI and the Alliance for Competitive Taxation (ACT) to discuss why, with such agreement between political parties, corporate tax reform has yet to occur, and what reform should and might look like in the future.
Laura Tyson of ACT and the University of California, Berkeley, delineated how today's corporate tax code creates a lockout of overseas money that American companies could use for investment at home. She encouraged US competitiveness, expressing optimism about the prospects for the US business community and the federal government to develop a joint plan to broaden the corporate tax base and lower overall rates.
Dan Shaviro of New York University School of Law highlighted some challenges to reform, such as the fact that many proposals involve trade-offs from new to old investment. Marty Sullivan of Tax Analysts agreed, listing multiple reasons — from economic difficulties to a lack of political consensus about reform goals — why he is pessimistic that corporate tax reform will happen in the near future. However, he concluded that corporate tax reform will always be on the agenda, since many groups have an interest in pursuing it.
Economists often condemn the inefficiency and complexity of the US corporate income tax, and politicians on both sides of the aisle advocate reform. Yet the US corporate tax code has remained largely unchanged for decades. Has the time come for reform? What would an ideal corporate income tax look like?
Join AEI and the Alliance for Competitive Taxation for a wide-ranging discussion of the ins and outs of corporate tax reform on the morning following the State of the Union.
If you are unable to attend, we welcome you to watch the event live on this page. Full video will be posted within 24 hours.
Registration & Breakfast
Daniel Shaviro, New York University School of Law
Marty Sullivan, Tax Analysts
Laura D’Andrea Tyson, Alliance for Competitive Taxation and University of California, Berkeley
Alan D. Viard, AEI
For more information, please contact Emma Bennett at Emma.Bennett@aei.org, 202.862.5862.
For media inquiries, please contact MediaServices@aei.org, 202.862.5829.
Daniel Shaviro is the Wayne Perry Professor of Taxation at New York University (NYU) School of Law. Previously, he worked at Caplin & Drysdale, a leading tax specialty firm, and at the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation. He began his teaching career at the University of Chicago Law School in 1987, and joined the NYU School of Law in 1995. His scholarly work examines tax policy, budget policy, and entitlements issues. Shaviro’s books include “Fixing U.S. International Taxation” (Oxford University Press, 2014), “Decoding the U.S. Corporate Tax” (Urban Institute Press, 2009), “Taxes, Spending, and the U.S. Government’s March Toward Bankruptcy” (Cambridge University Press, 2006), “Making Sense of Social Security Reform” (University of Chicago Press, 2000), “When Rules Change: An Economic and Political Analysis of Transition Relief and Retroactivity” (University of Chicago Press, 2000), and “Do Deficits Matter?” (University of Chicago Press, 1997). In addition to his scholarly work, Shaviro has published a novel, “Getting It” (iUniverse, 2010), and writes for his blog at http://danshaviro.blogspot.com.
Marty Sullivan is chief economist at Tax Analysts, a nonprofit provider of tax news and analysis for the global community. He contributes regularly to various Tax Analysts print and online publications, including the flagship magazine Tax Notes and its sister publications, State Tax Notes and Tax Notes International. He is also the author of “Corporate Tax Reform: Taxing Profits in the 21st Century” (Apress, 2011). He testifies regularly before Congress, appears on national television and radio, and is often quoted in leading newspapers and magazines. Previously, he has served as an economist at the US Treasury Department, the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, and a major accounting firm.
Laura D’Andrea Tyson is a professor at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, and director of the Berkeley-Haas Institute for Business and Social Impact. She served as dean of London Business School from 2002 to 2006, and as dean of the Berkeley-Haas School from 1998 to 2001. Tyson was a member of the US Department of State Foreign Affairs Policy Board, President Obama’s Council of Jobs and Competitiveness, and the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board. She served in the Bill Clinton administration as the chair of the Council of Economic Advisers from 1993 to 1995, and as the president’s national economic adviser from 1995 to 1996. Tyson is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and serves on the Advisory Council of the Brookings Institution’s Hamilton Project. She is an economic advisory board member of the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation and an adviser to the Alliance for Competitive Taxation. Tyson also serves on the board of directors at Morgan Stanley, AT&T, Silver Spring Networks, and CBRE Group Inc.
Alan D. Viard is a resident scholar at AEI, where he studies federal tax and budget policy. Before joining AEI, Viard was a senior economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and an assistant professor of economics at Ohio State University. He has also been a visiting scholar at the US Department of the Treasury's Office of Tax Analysis, a senior economist at the White House's Council of Economic Advisers, and a staff economist at the Joint Committee on Taxation of the US Congress. While at AEI, Viard has also taught public finance at Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute. Earlier in his career, Viard spent time in Japan as a visiting scholar at Osaka University’s Institute of Social and Economic Research. He is a frequent contributor to AEI’s On the Margin column in Tax Notes and was nominated for Tax Notes’ 2009 Tax Person of the Year. He has also testified before Congress, and his work has been featured in a wide range of publications. Viard is the coauthor of “Progressive Consumption Taxation: The X Tax Revisited” (AEI Press, 2012) and “The Real Tax Burden: Beyond Dollars and Cents” (AEI Press, 2011) and the editor of “Tax Policy Lessons from the 2000s” (AEI Press, 2009).