HARWOOD: Your Texas colleague, Ted Cruz, has got a business consumption tax. Some people call it an equivalent of a value-added tax. Do you like that approach?
BRADY: You know there's real merit to that approach. And there's real merit to almost every tax plan our presidential nominees have put together. And so what we're hopeful for in the House is to bring out our blueprint later this year on what our principles and pro-growth tax reform would look like. It's going to have elements that have been raised in those presidential policy positions.
HARWOOD: Dave Camp went through a process, came up with a plan you kind of liked.
BRADY: Yeah. Dave Camp, in my view, made tax reform inevitable, in the sense that he showed you could broaden the base and lower the rates and simplify the code and be competitive around the world and make it more understandable. So ...
HARWOOD: Now wait, let me stop you on that. You say, "Made it inevitable." Some people say he showed it was impossible because he laid it out and his own caucus shot it down in about five minutes.
BRADY: Well, it didn't in my view. In fact, I don't think it got the oxygen it deserved at the time. But he should ...
HARWOOD: John Boehner said, "Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah" ...
BRADY: Well, he did. But Paul Ryan is all green-light thinking on tax reform.
HARWOOD: OK. Do you agree, by the way, that tax reform can only be done with buy-in from both parties?
BRADY: You know, I think at the end of the day, it will be bipartisan. Maybe not at every step in the process, as we lay this out, but at the end of the day, the major changes in American government almost always require buy-in from both parties.
HARWOOD: Could you envision a tax reform that you could go along with that had many elements that you liked that did not decrease the top rate?
BRADY: That'd be difficult to accept, because I think that holds back investment, both by businesses, small businesses, and by families.
HARWOOD: Because there are some conservatives who are arguing that in the environment that we're in now, that conservative tax reformers ought to focus on things other than the top rate.
BRADY: I'd have to disagree, and here's why. Besides businesses investing, when individuals, after they make that dollar, they have three choices. They can spend it, they can save it, which is good as well, but they can reinvest it back in the economy. And earners, not just high earners, all along the scale do that. I want to encourage families and environments to do more of that. And so on that side of the ledger, let's look at those pro-growth packages.
HARWOOD: You have been a proponent of altering the mandate of the Fed so that they do not have a dual mandate of focusing on inflation, but also full employment. You want to get rid of full employment part. Why do you think that that would be wise for the Fed to do, especially given the low-inflation environment we're in now, and is that a big priority of yours to move that?
BRADY: You know, it is a priority, although now, as chairman of Ways and Means, I'm really focused more on the fiscal side of issues, than monetary. But I look into history, whenever the Fed's focused on a stable dollar, when they fight inflation or deflation effectively, that's when our economy grows.
When they try to do too much, which in my view they have been for too long, they muddle that assignment. Frankly, they don't have the tools to juice this economy other than for very short periods. I think they ought to be out of that business and laying the foundation, the true foundation, for economic growth — protecting the purchasing power of the dollar over time. That actually grows the economy.