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Rich People's MovementsGrassroots Campaigns to Untax the One Percent$
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Isaac Martin

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199928996

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199928996.001.0001

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The Most Sinister Lobby

The Most Sinister Lobby

Chapter:
(p.90) Chapter 4 The Most Sinister Lobby
Source:
Rich People's Movements
Author(s):

Isaac William Martin

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199928996.003.0005

The Second World War brought new policy threats—the Revenue Act of 1942, which increased income taxes on all Americans, and the administration’s proposal for a maximum income of $25,000—that triggered an unprecedented wave of mobilization for constitutional tax limitation. This chapter traces the efforts of the American Taxpayers’ Association, the Committee for Constitutional Government, and the Western Tax Council to mobilize businesspeople in response to these threats. They were led by Edward A. Rumely, a veteran of the Progressive movement who used his skills in the service of limiting income taxation, and Frank Packard, a tax lawyer who learned about grassroots organizing from radical farm activists in North Dakota. Men and women who espoused tax limits in the Second World War risked being painted as fascist sympathizers. These activists were forced to fend off charges of treason with careful policy crafting.

Keywords:   Income tax, tax limitation, Progressive movement, World War II, conservatism

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