(CNN) - Leave it to one of the kings of late night comedy to press Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain on his "9-9-9" tax plan and offer up his own suggestion to the former pizza executive.
"You ought to get some sort of toll-free number," Letterman told Cain in an interview set to air Friday. "You dial 9-9-9, you get a free pizza."
Although the plan is "clever" and "fun," Letterman, host of CBS' "Late Show with David Letterman," told Cain: "You don't even know what it means."
Cain's response? "It works."
The candidate's tax plan, a pillar of his White House bid, proposes replacing the current tax system with a 9% corporate tax, 9% income tax and 9% national tax rate.
"Instead of a free pizza when you dial 9-9-9 you're going to be able to get a job, that's the whole point, OK?" Cain said. "I'm about creating jobs."
But Letterman countered that the economy may be "beyond solvability at this point," to which Cain jokingly responded, "Are you trying to talk me out of this? He's trying real hard to talk me out of this."
The rich, many of them paying 15% on capital gains and dividends under the Bush tax cuts will now pay only 9%, a reduction of 6$.
Mr. Cain's 9-9-9 plan calls for a complete elimination of all capital gains taxes. Please excuse me while I take the liberty to revise your math. The hedge fund manager would still pay 9% on purchases (made in the United States, mind you), but his federal income tax on capital gains income would be reduced to zero.
Mr. Cain's 9% sales tax is only for "new" items purchased in the US. By his current definition that would include "new homes", which completely devastate an already struggling market. But, the hedge fund manager who moves into an existing home that some poor middle class family was forced to foreclose on would pay no national sales tax.
I wouldn't vote for this guy, but the libya thing I kind of understand, he just isn't explaining it right. As a president you are privileged to "insider information" that as a candidate you don't have. This may be the point he is trying to make and FAILING to do. It's like many campaign promises that get broke, once the dude is in office he gets the lowdown on promised subject and has to say OOPS, can't do that one sorry folks.
Cain is just a diversion. He is a sink for journalists, and air time. He is the wrong question in the spotlight, which takes the heat off the other, less un-viable GOP contenders.
G.I. Joe wrote:
By the way Rudy NYC, 9 + 8 = 17%.
I think you meant to post that for Ricky, not me.
I always enjoy your posts.
I still say 9-9-9 sounds like a formula for a lawn fertilizer. Maybe kind of symbolic.
A tax preparer friend pointed out to me that the problem with a Natl Sales Tax is:
1. If it is on all transactions, by the time it hits the consumer a manufactured item may have gone through four to five taxations which will make the more "processed" items the most taxed.
2. If you use a "Value Added Tax", then businesses will still be able to deduct all kinds of phony business costs (the corporate board vacation to Cabo San Lucas) to determine the actual profit being taxed.
So the only fair system is the flat transanction tax of 1. and the costs will be sent to the consumer.
A flat income tax is not fair because rich business owners and corporations can still write off all their phony expenses to determine net "income", whereas the 99% of the working class cannot write off anything because their income is all taxable.
The other tax which hasn't been mentioned is upon "net worth and possessions". So a poor person renting with no savings has no liability, whereas the guy with the boat, and toys, and the millions in stock...pays a lot. It would be an annual estate tax? Of course, the rancher and the small business owner would be hit hard, but.....it would be the least regressive
Four and The Door wrote:
The 9-9-9 tax plan is brilliant even if it does bring about a national sales tax.
I am forced to agree with you on that point. 9-9-9 is brililant. It is a clever camoflauge for reducing taxes on those who least need tax cuts. While at the same time it drives up the annual deficit, which would require further spending cuts, thereby self-fulfilling the argument that government spends too much.
Still think this whole "presidency thing" is a joke right Cain?
Cain's "9-9-9" plan is a farce and will never work. My "8.3572-8.3572-8.3572" plan is much more realistic. Pull your head out of the clouds Herman and go with my "8.3572-8.3572-8.3572" plan.
What the U.S needs right now, is a candidate to step up to the plate, and put America back on their toes again! Who is this candidate? Donald Trump. Cain doesnt have the experience to back him up, he's a delivery man people! Donald Trump has the business ablilty to create jobs, and actually listens to the people! U.S is a laughstoke at the momment, and Trump will be good, especially with China and his propostions for that country!
Politics as comedy. Not. All these candidates appearing on comedy shows as if they're celebs trying to get fans. American politics: Can it sink any lower?
The joke will be on us if Cain really DOES get the presidential nomination and actually implements his crazy plan!
maybe shipping jobs overseas the last 30 yr,s while the population was growing was not a good idea–who thought that one up
Of course The Enconomy is unsolvable. The problem is Politicans keep trying to solve it!
Cain's "9-9-9" plan is a farce and will never work. My "8.3572-8.3572-8.3572" plan is much more realistic.
Your figure's too high. Lower it. How about the "3.14259 – 3.14259 – 3.14259" plan? You can call it the "Pi – Pi – Pi" Plan.
Don't worry, Mr. Cain. Voters will talk you out of it by voting for someone else.
Four and The Door wrote: " The 9-9-9 tax plan is brilliant ..."
Ha ha ha, I get the joke! That is just too funny. “Brilliant” like in “brilliant” marketing strategy, verses “brilliant” like in a viable pan.
Yes it is indeed brilliant, but really –check: the Republican brand is now close to dirt.
So, sadly for intelligent conservatives everywhere, what may be brilliant Marketing strategy for selling Cain is also quite effectively adding to the fastly eroding brand of the once creditable and powerful Republican political party.
No, Herman, you are working very hard trying to convince Americans to not make you president.
Letterman is a typical left coast liberal communist marxist socialist Democrat comedian.....he is an idiot. If he said something like this about Obama when he was a candidate for President, Letterman would have been raked over the coals by the liberal news media, Jesse Jackson and all other black antagonists/anarchists.
Because Cain is black and a conservative.....that makes it allright with liberals, Democrats, Jesse, NAACP, and all other whiners in America, plus the liberal news media CBS, NBC, ABC, PBS and the like. Libs call conservatives racist......now thats a good one for the record books, and by the way......quite untrue....Libs look at yourselves for a change................
The whole Cain thing is "Performance Art" according to Rachel Maddow. I really think she's correct. Though I wouldn't be so kind. It's really just a gigantic book tour that got out of hand. I bet Palin is jealous.
OK so Herman's 9-9-9 plan might not be perfect but it sure beats Obama's 9-9-9 plan! (9 rounds of golf a month, 9 vacations a year, 9% unemployment)
Thanks Dave for seeing right through this chump.
It's gotta be rough for the principled patriots of the right wing when a guy like me knows more about history, economics, and foreign policy than their anointed leaders.
I wonder why Cain went on Letterman? Hardly anyone watches that show.