Political Analysts: Tax Hike Is 'Worst' Answer To AMT Snarl
Calls to repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax are coming from both parties. But how best to offset the missing revenue? On "Power Lunch," Greg Valliere, chief political strategist for the Stanford Washington Research Group, and Andrew Parmentier, economic and policy analyst at Friedman Billings Ramsey, agreed on what not to do: Raise other taxes.
Valliere told CNBC's Carl Quintanilla that of the many schemes for scrapping the Alternative Minimum Tax, the "worst plan" of all is the current Democratic proposal to raise taxes on the wealthy -- a "spinmeister's delight."
The political strategist warned that such an upper-bracket hike could stifle investment and productivity. Another complication -- and "the one story the papers miss" -- is that President George W. Bush "will certainly veto" any such bill, leaving the Alternative Minimum problem unsolved.
Parmentier agreed "absolutely," and added that Congressional Democrats may miss a "great opportunity" for budget reconciliation on far-reaching issues like hospital cuts, HMO regulations and Medicare -- "$70 [billion] to $100 billion on the table" -- as the legislature pursues "small provisions" of the tax code.