New York, June 25, 2013—As the U.S. marks 100 years since the passage of the income tax-codifying 16th Amendment, Professor Michael J. Graetz delivered a speech at The National Press Club making the case for reforms including a value-added tax (VAT) that would effectively act as a national sales tax.
Graetz delivered the speech on June 17, drawing from his 2010 book, 100 Million Unnecessary Returns, which details how a VAT at a rate of 10 to 15 percent could finance an income-tax exemption for $100,000 of family income and substantially lower rates above that amount. That would eliminate 100 million families—or about 90 percent of filers from income tax rolls.
Earlier this month, Graetz, the Columbia Alumni Professor of Tax Law and the Wilbur H. Friedman Professor of Tax Law, was selected by the National Tax Association to receive the Daniel M. Holland Medal for outstanding contributions to the study and practice of public finance. Graetz was selected by a committee of NTA members, and he will receive the award at the NTA’s November meeting in Tampa.
Graetz is a leading expert on national and international tax law. He has written many books on federal taxation as well as more than 60 articles on a wide range of tax, international taxation, health policy, and social insurance issues. His most recent book, The End of Energy: The Unmaking of America’s Environment, Security and Independence, was published in 2011 and assesses U.S. energy policy. In the March 2013 issue of the Columbia Law Review, Graetz examines tax policies that support innovation.
Columbia Law School, founded in 1858, stands at the forefront of legal education and of the law in a global society. Columbia Law School combines traditional strengths in corporate law and financial regulation, international and comparative law, property, contracts, constitutional law, and administrative law with pioneering work in intellectual property, digital technology, tax law and policy, national security, human rights, sexuality and gender, and environmental law.