WASHINGTON -- Under their latest proposal to the deficit reduction super committee, Democrats would agree to undertake comprehensive tax reform that included a pledge to avoid letting Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy expire.
According to a private document, the authenticity of which was confirmed by a leadership aide, super committee Democrats are eyeing between $950 billion and $1 trillion in revenue raisers and tax hikes as part of a $2.3 trillion deficit reduction package. Between $300 billion and $350 billion of that would come from what one congressional aide described as "low-hanging fruit" -- ending tax incentives for corporate jet owners, closing loopholes for oil and gas companies, changing ethanol subsidies, and so on.
The remaining $650 billion in revenue that committee Democrats are targeting would be raised through a set of "Fast Track Procedures For Tax Reform." As part of those procedures, Democrats would agree to three guiding principles: "(a) corporate tax reform to enhance competitiveness, (b) an individual rate no higher than 35% and (c) a distribution of changes that ensures a tax code as progressive as current law."
Another Senate aide, familiar with discussions, insisted that the document was not a formal Democratic plan but rather a "proposal that's been discussed."