Gucci Gulch

Gucci Gulch - Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and Alan Murray's book,...

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Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and Alan Murray’s book, Showdown at Gucci Gulch , is a report about “the bill that nobody wanted” – the Tax Reform Act of 1986 (TRA86). The title of the report refers to the hallways outside the Ways and Means and Finance Committees where lobbyists and journalists stood throughout the two yeas that it took to develop the bill that became the most important tax reform since the federal income tax was established. The book served as a beneficial opportunity to have some insight into the processes that surround legislation – and in this case, one of the most important pieces of legislation that has ever been passed through Congress and approved by the president. Although the legislation may not achieve what many hoped it might have, it was good overall. TRA86 reduced taxation on income a great deal. The top tax rate was reduced from 50% to 28%, while the bottom rate was raised from 11% to 15%. It actually taxed the higher middle- upper class incomes 33% with a built in “bubble rate.” It was very beneficial because it broadened the tax base and it was also enormously successful at eliminating many special incentives written into law by many different members of Congress that made tax shelters for the wealthiest individuals and corporations. It eradicated the deductibility of non-mortgage paying consumer interest payments such as interest on credit card debts, car loans, and life insurance loans. Ironically, after all of these great achievements and large strides in attempting to appease the people’s enormous dissatisfaction with the existing tax code, the only people who recognized its profound achievement were those who shared part of the process, as well as the active
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Gucci Gulch - Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and Alan Murray's book,...

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