Wednesday, November 9, 2011

"Cut, Balance, and Grow"

Governor Rick Perry’s proposed economic plan “Cut, Balance and Grow” would replace the current income tax with a 20-percent flat tax for everyone. His plan also includes changes to Social Security and Medicare.

University of Houston Political Science Professor Brandon Rottinghaus says the idea of a flat tax is becoming increasingly popular. “This has been something that presidential candidates have batted around for the last few election cycles, so I do think it's likely that he's going to pick up a lot of support by doing something like that,” Rottinghaus told KUHF Houston Public Radio News, “Now of course, the details may present more complicated effects, so that some of the things may be less desirable to the more moderate wing of the party to independent voters."

"His positioning in the race gives him a kind of national credibility that every other candidate is also vying for. If you consider Mitt Romney to be the frontrunner and largely to be the kind of moderate voice of the party, then you'd have to think about who is going to be the conservative alternative to that. And so as long as Rick Perry is articulating these sorts of conservative ideals, he's certainly going to be talked about."

Rottinghaus added that voters often have short memories, and Perry's economic plan could be what it takes to overcome the fallout from what many consider his poor debate performances.

Rottinghaus , author of The Provisional Pulpit (Texas A&M University Press), explores concepts such as the important layer of understanding to the issue of how and under what conditions presidents lead public opinion. All modern presidents clearly attempt to lead public opinion; often, due to factors outside their control, they fail. In his book, Rottinghaus explains how and when they succeed.

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