GOP Presidential Candidate Buddy Roemer: End A Tax Code That Incentivizes Outsourcing Of American Jobs

Today, GOP presidential primary candidate former Gov. Buddy Roemer (LA) spoke at the National Press Club about how he is campaigning by taking on Big Money and special interests in Washington.

At one point, Roemer was asked what it would take for Congress to enact reform of our trade policies. Roemer explained that monied interests would try to block reforms he was proposing, like eliminating foreign tax credits and tax deductions for overseas business expenses:

QUESTION: What would it take to convince Congress to pass significant trade reform?

ROEMER: Cut off the big checks. GE doesn’t want trade reform, they want it the way it is. […] I would do away with the deduction in the tax code, I think it’s section 162, which allows them to make a call center, for example, overseas and they deduct the expense from their American taxes. It oughta be changed. […] Corporations are free to do what’s in their best interests. But I think it’s in their best interests for America to be strengthened. […] There are ways to do it, I’ve mentioned two of them already, the deductability of expenses and the foreign tax credits.

By criticizing a tax code that incentivizes American firms to outsource jobs overseas, Roemer is taking an approach that is distinctly different from many of his GOP colleagues. Some candidates, like former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (GA), have even gone as far as to praise tax dodging by major corporations, saying that we should let them decide their own tax rates.