A Yale University expert on Friday delivered a stinging criticism of the Republicans' proposed tax plan, saying Congress is counting on America having amnesia about the results of President Ronald Reagan's economic policies.
"This the same 'voodoo economics' that we heard repeatedly in the 1980s, and I guess the Congress is counting on the fact that we're all suffering from amnesia," said Stephen Roach, senior fellow at Yale's Jackson Institute of Global Affairs, referring to President George H.W. Bush's disparaging description of Reagan's tax cuts.
"But there are a few of us who are not," he added.
After Reagan took office in 1981, he implemented two tax overhauls in a bid to bring the economy — then facing a recession — up to speed. The president spearheaded an effort in 1981 to reduce income taxes for Americans across the board, and a second act in 1986 to simplify the tax brackets.
Some have credited Reagan's first policy with spurring the economic boom in the 1980s.
But critics argue the move created huge debt: During the course of Reagan's eight-year term, credit levels ballooned from $994 billion to almost $2.9 trillion.