I think everyone across the political spectrum can agree that there are inefficiencies in our tax code—and that in some ways it creates warped incentives and leads to imbalances or potential imbalances in the economy. So a thoroughgoing tax reform would be positive, but it’s extremely difficult to do politically.
When we look at the forward outlook for tax policy, I want to differentiate very clearly between tax reform and tax cuts. Tax reform, to me, means something that is revenue neutral from a government perspective. You reduce taxes in one place, but you close loopholes in another, and the net effect is that the government receives the same amount of revenue.
That would be unabashedly good for growth and for the economy because it would increase the efficiency of the tax code. Every loophole creates an incentive somewhere in the system that may or may not be economically ideal, and reducing those and leaving the government financial balance in the same place would be a very good thing.
It’s very hard to do politically, of course. We haven’t had a thorough revamp of the tax code since the 1980s because every loophole has behind it a constituency and it’s difficult to negotiate among those different groups to come up with something comprehensive. It really does have to be comprehensive.