Tax Reformers Plan Rally, Virtual March

Posted March 31, 2010 at 9:51am

With the deadline for tax filings just two weeks away, several groups including the Fair Tax Campaign, Tea Party Express, Americans for Tax Reform and FreedomWorks are banding together physically and digitally to urge Congress to overhaul the tax code.

While the advocates aren’t necessarily in agreement about how Congress should move forward to change the tax code, Ken Hoagland, chairman of the recently formed Online Tax Revolt and the Fair Tax Campaign, said it’s an unprecedented show of unity among tax reformers.

“A lot of tax reform groups are coming together,” Hoagland said. “Most often we’re debating each other, but we have said, ‘That can wait.'”

Americans for Tax Reform’s Grover Norquist agrees, calling the decision to work together “smart politics and common sense.”

“Right now, we are all moving in the same direction,” he added.

The ATR is hosting a briefing at 12:30 p.m. in the Capitol Visitor Center on April 14, the day before tax day. The ATR has not only invited several like-minded tax groups, but also Members of Congress. The event will focus particularly on the tax increases associated with the recently enacted health care bill, Norquist explained.

There will also be plenty of activity on April 15, the deadline for tax returns. FreedomWorks is hosting a rally near the Washington Monument that evening with several other groups, including the Tea Party Express.

Online Tax Revolt’s Hoagland is also ginning up support for the tax day rally on April 15, but he is widening the reach of the effort with an online component. The Online Tax Revolt gives people who support overhauling the tax code but cannot come to the Capitol a way to stay involved, Hoagland said.

People can create an avatar, or online character that represents them, which will digitally march to Washington. Several Members of Congress — including Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Dan Burton (R-Ind.) — have registered avatars for themselves to make the virtual trip.

“A lot of people know in their bones that something has gone terribly wrong with the tax system but just can’t come to Washington to voice first-person,” Hoagland said of the effort.