VIDEO REPORT: Congressional Candidates Talk Tax Policy

By: Rachelle Baillon Email
By: Rachelle Baillon Email

Thursday, August 9, 2012--4:30p.m.

MADISON--Of the many issues bandied about every election cycle, when it comes down to it, for a lot of voters, the pinnacle point is how much those plans will ultimately cost their pocketbooks. That's why we sat-down with the candidates for the second district congressional seat, to talk about their tax policy plans.

For Mark Pocan and Kelda Helen Roys that means allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire--at least for some of the population."That's what really has cost us a lot and that could help us extend Social Security, Medicare and other vital programs," said Pocan. "So I think we need to have a better system than we have and it hasn't proven to work as they promised when they did the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy."
"You can't be serious about balancing the budget unless you're willing to talk about revenue and our taxes," said Roys. "The Bush tax cuts were unaffordable, we need to allow the Bush tax cuts for the very wealthy to expire, households making 250,000 a year or more."

Roys said that would take care of a significant chunk of the deficit. Both she and Pocan said they can also likely find savings in the defense budget. Roys also said she'd like to see targeted cuts to things like homeland security and the corrections system.

Candidate Matt Silverman said he wants to eliminate all exemptions and deductions--but also wants to reduce the percentage that is owed. "We also need to add brackets at the top at the one, five and ten million dollar levels," said Silverman. "Because I do believe in a progressive tax system where the burden to supply the government with the funds they need to provide the services we deserve should be distributed based on your ability to pay."

Dennis Hall called taxes a fairness issue, but as for what that might look like in terms of brackets and numbers, said this: "I honestly don't know, I don't pretend to have all the answers," said Hall. "Like I said, I'm not a career politician, I've got a day job and I'm trying to do, what I'm doing is surrounding myself with people smarter than myself--which is not that hard to do."

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