Group plans ‘Fair Tax’ convention

By Jon Dougherty

Mobilizing Americans to press Congress for replacement of the current “intrusive” income tax system is one of the primary objectives at a meeting next month being planned by a national taxpayers’ organization.

“We not only believe that we can replace the tax code, but that we must,” says an introduction posted on the convention website of Americans For Fair Taxation. “We need your help and the help of millions of citizens who share the same frustration of ‘being sick and tired of being sick and tired’ of the onerous, intrusive and archaic income tax code.”

“The current federal income tax system is broken. Patching up the existing code is pointless. It’s time for a fresh approach, a fair approach,” the group says.

The event, which is scheduled for Nov. 8-10 in Atlanta, Ga., will feature strategy sessions on how to build local support for changing the current system, as well as a presentation on the benefits of a national sales tax.

Motivating grass-roots support is also an important goal of the convention, so “we want folks to come to be energized, equipped and inspired,” says Genie Hayes, AFFT’s communication director, adding that the meeting will provide an opportunity for the AFFT leadership to be introduced to state-level volunteers working to spread the group’s message.

On Saturday night of the conference, Rep. John Linder, R-Ga., author of the Fair Tax Act of 2001 – which calls for the repeal of all federal taxes except excise taxes – will be a featured banquet guest.

Linder’s legislation “offers long-needed tax relief – in the form of lower prices, nearly nonexistent compliance costs, and the ability to choose how much to spend in taxes – to all Americans, while eliminating the income tax and allowing Americans to keep 100 percent of their paycheck,” says information on his congressional website.

His plan repeals all corporate and individual income taxes, payroll taxes, self-employment taxes, capital gains taxes, estate taxes and gift taxes. It imposes a revenue-neutral national sales tax on all new goods and services at the point of final purchase for consumption.

Business-to-business transactions and used products – which have already been taxed – are not subject to the sales tax.

Linder’s measure also calls for a universal rebate in an amount equal to the sales tax on essential goods and services so that no one pays taxes on the purchase of necessities.

Hayes said ATTF wants to make the fair tax an issue so important that lawmakers who oppose it do so at their own risk.

“If they aren’t in danger of losing re-election by not supporting Fair Tax, nothing will ever change,” she told WorldNetDaily.

She also said the 420,000-strong organization is finally getting back on track after a slow year following the 9-11 attack, when terrorism – not domestic issues like tax reform – dominated political debate. But she said the organization feels the time is now right to regroup and forge ahead.

“We’re doing this to try to get people reactivated, motivated and back on board,” she said.

Hayes said AFFT was excited to have Herman Cain, CEO of Godfather’s Pizza and highly sought-after motivational speaker, in its corner.

Cain – who is acting as a spokesperson for the AFFT convention – is perhaps best known in political circles as the “pizza guy” who first said figures used by Hillary Clinton in 1993 to sell her universal health-care plan to Congress and the nation didn’t add up.

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