Two On McCainomics

by: Mark J. Perry

John McCain sure sounds like a tax rate-cutting fiscal conservative. His tax proposals, detailed in this speech last week, seem to extend the Reagan-Bush legacy of lower marginal rates across the board, and special emphasis on supply-side incentives (see various tax breaks below). But this article contrasts McCain the candidate with McCain the Senator.

Elsewhere, the New York Times profiles McCain's chief economic adviser, Douglas Holtz-Eakins. The article argues McCain's policy proposals focus mainly on the revenue side, without addressing spending:

The problem is that the campaign has been far, far more detailed about its tax cuts, which would worsen the deficit, than its spending cuts, which would reduce it. Mr. McCain has proposed the elimination of the alternative minimum tax (at a cost of $60 billion a year), new child tax deductions ($65 billion), a corporate tax cut ($100 billion) and faster write-offs for corporate investments in new equipment ($50 billion to $75 billion).

But in academia, Mr. Holtz-Eakin is known for empirical work that questions the productivity of government expenditures. Here is an ungated example.