DC Senior Counsels John Breaux and Trent Lott discussed tax policy reform with the Wall Street Journal on June 13, 2013. “Everybody in Congress in general terms is for tax reform, but the direction of those reforms is in the eyes of the beholder,” former U.S. Sen. Breaux said in an interview with CFO Journal. “You can design a new international tax code for the United States that does not incentivize companies to locate in tax haven countries.” Sen. Breaux also said he felt “optimistic” that significant business tax reforms could take place during this Congress since the two legislators leading the effort, Rep. Dave Camp, and Sen. Max Baucus, only have the opportunity to make such reforms in the coming months. “It’s only a 6 to 9 month window every two years that you could do something,” former Sen. Lott said, adding that he expects there will be some consideration of whether the impetus for corporate tax reform could be tied to debt ceiling negotiations in November, especially around lowering the overall corporate tax rate. According to Sen. Lott, if corporate tax reform isn’t achieved by early next year, the next opportunity to do so would be in 2017.
Sen. Lott told CFO Journal that tax reform will likely be undertaken by the current Congress, claiming “it could happen because it should happen.” Across the board reform would be “better for the economy and create more growth in jobs,” he added. Sen. Breaux shared with CFO Journal that he is hopeful that a real opportunity exists for Congress to come together on both individual and corporate tax reform this session.